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California 46, Missouri 21, Mr. Doggett 21, U.s. 19, Pennsylvania 17, Mr. Johnson 17, Madam 14, Us 14, Mr. Pallone 13, Mr. Denham 12, Mr. Clay 10, Mr. Paulsen 10, Montana 10, Washington 10, Battin 10, Mr. Pitts 10, America 9, Michigan 9, Lorraine 8, Mr. Kelly 7,
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  CSPAN    Public Affairs    News  News/Business.  

    December 19, 2012
    1:00 - 5:00pm EST  

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and the national association of county and city health officials and trust for america's health. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. does the gentleman from michigan continue to reserve? mr. rogers: i continue to reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the the gentleman from new jersey. mr. pallone: i have no additional speakers. so i would just urge passage of the legislation and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from michigan. mr. rogers: thank you, madam speaker. as many things keep me awake at night as the chairman of the house permanent select committee on intelligence, the growing threat from chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear attacks not only abroad but here is of growing concern, instability in governments that possess these materials and increasing interest from those who would choose to do harm to the united states, desire to get their hands on these materials, means that we must prepare ourselves here at home for the unfortunate, i think unlikely, certainly in the short-term but possible position of being
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attacked with these disturbing weapons systems. this is that important step to protect americans by increasing our stockpiles and would urge its passage and with that, madam speaker, i yield back the balance of my time. . the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is will the house pass the bill. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended -- the gentleman from michigan. mr. rogers: madam speaker, with that i would request the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. all those in favor of taking this vote by the yeas and nays will rise and remain standing until counted. a sufficient number having arisen, the yeas and nays are ordered. pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, further proceedings on this motion will be postponed.
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the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from pennsylvania seek recognition? >> mr. speaker, i move to suspend the rules and pass s. 1440, the preemie re-authorization act, as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: senate 1440, an act to reduce preterm labor and delivery and the risk of pregnancy-related deaths and complications due to pregnancy and to reduce infant mortality caused by prematurity. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. pitts, and the gentleman from new jersey, mr. pallone, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from pennsylvania. mr. pitts: i ask unanimous consent that all members may
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have five legislative days within which to revise and extend their remarks and insert extraneous materials in the record on s. 1440. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. pitts: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. pitts: mr. speaker, s. 1440, the prematurity research, expansion and education for mothers who deliver infants early re-authorization, or the preemie re-authorization act, would take important steps to protect and improve children's health. the bill includes three important programs. the preemie re-authorization act, the national pediatric research network and the children's hospital's graduate medical education re-authorization. the preemie re-authorization act addresses one of the leading causes of neonatal death and a major cause of childhood disabilities, preterm birth. since its passage in 2006, the
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preemie act has sponsored important research that has led to improved prevention and care for children born too early. re-authorization will mean the continuation of the program that will lead to even better outcomes for children. the national pediatric research network is a proven way to support pediatric research by coordinating multicentered research activities, including those in rural areas. by working in teams, innovative research improves especially for diseases that are rare or affect a small population of children. most of the approximately 7,000 rare diseases are pediatric. and often genetic. and doctors do not have sufficient therapies to treat them. this bill will help alleviate that problem. the children's hospital graduate medical education
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re-authorization would enable the department of health and human services to provide funding to free-standing children's hospitals, to support the training of pediatricians and other residents. prior to the enactment of chgme, the number of residents in children's hospitals had declined by 13%. now the program has enabled children's hospitals to increase their training programs by 35%. in my home state of pennsylvania , three premier children's hospitals, children's hospital of pittsburgh, st. christopher hospital for children, and children's hospital of philadelphia received chgme funds that support and ensure world-renowned health care for children. chgme is a significant achievement in pediatric health care in pennsylvania and across the country. despite these gains, shortages
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still exist. and the future of the pediatric work force relies on the continuation of chgme. i commend the leadership on both sides of the aisle and the committee for their leadership on this. these programs enjoy bipartisan support and i urge my colleagues to support s. 1440 and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from new jersey. mr. pallone: thank you, madam speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. pallone: madam speaker, i'm pleased to rise in support of s. 1440 as amended, the legislation before us extendses two existing programs and creates -- extends two existing programs and creates a new initiative. the first title of the legislation re-authorizes the prematurity research expansion and education for mothers who deliver infants early. or preemie act. through fiscal year 2017. the preemie act was signed into
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law in 2006 and i was proud to be a co-sponsor of the original house legislation. s. 1440 as amended calls for further studies on factors related to prematurity, improved data on birth, continued preterm birth prevention efforts and strengthened public and health-provider education on risk factors for preterm delivery and treatments and outcomes for preterm infants. the legislation also codifies an advisory committee to the secretary of health and human services on infant mortality and directs the secretary to coordinate existing quality studies on hospital re-ed as --, readmissions and preterm infacts. since the enactment of the preemie act we've seen the preterm birth rate decline. the good news is there's been progress and better understanding of the causes of premature births and promoting interventions that work. on the other hand we don't know the causes of premature birth in up to 40% of cases and then there's the cost of the health
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care system of premature births. more than $26 billion each year, not to mention the increased risk of serious disability and death for newborns and the tremendous toll prematurity takes on their familyless. and that's precisely why the goals of the preemie act remain just as salient as they were six years ago. the second title is similar to the house-passed national pediatric research network act of 2012 and allows the national institutes of health to establish a national pediatric research network comprised of up to eight pediatric research consortia. the consortia will conduct basic clinical, behavioral and translational research on pediatric diseases and conditions. among the eight consortia, the n.i.h. direct already ensure that an appropriate number of awards go to consortia that focus primarily on pediatric rare diseases such as spinal muscular atrophy or birth defects such as down syndrome. there are many rare pediatric diseases and in some of these
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diseases the children are incredibly fragile. if we can allow for research to occur across the country, not just one single location, research can be done at a larger level because children could then participate without having to travel. additionally we all know too well the traditionally -- that traditionally pediatric research has been underfunded. that makes it hard to train and develop the research talent needed to research these devastating illnesses. this can there are be the training grounds for future researchers. and finally the third title, madam speaker, of the amendment to s. 1440 re-authorizes the children's health -- i should say the children's hospital's graduate medical education or chgme program through fiscal year 2017. the legislation maintains the current authorization level and will support the work of 56 children's hospitals training over 5,000 pediatric residents in 30 states. the chgme program was first established in 1999, following
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declines in pediatric training programs that threatened the stability of the pediatric work force. like any parent knows, it's important to have a trusted health provider to turn to when your child is sick or is hurt. in congress, on a bipartisan basis, recognized that if we didn't create and fund programs to train pediatricians there wouldn't be anyone left to care for our kids. since its inception, the chgme program has been a success story. supporting children's hospitals and their work to train future generations of our pediatric work force, including pediatric subspecialists in very short supply. representing only 1% of all hospitals, the small number of children's hospitals that participated in the program trained approximately 40% of all pediatricians and nearly half of all pediatric specialists. and that's why continuing this critical program will have a major impact on access to primary care and specialty care for kids. re-authorizing this program, madam speaker, was one of my top health priorities of the year
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and want to thank chairman joe pitts, the chairman of our health subcommittee, for working with me on this bill. together with his help and leadership, we were able to move this bill through our committee and to the house floor last year and i'm hopeful that re-authorization of chgme programs will finally make it to the president's desk as part of s. 1440. i just want to take a moment to commend chairman upton, chairman pitts and ranking member waxman for their leadership on this legislation. i have to recognize and thank the house sponsor of this preemie act and the national pediatric research network act and those are energy and commerce members, congressman eshoo, congressman lance, congresswoman capps, and congresswoman mcmorris rodgers. they were really dedicated to these important issues. madam speaker, i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from pennsylvania. mr. pitts: madam speaker, i yield two minutes to the gentleman from georgia, one of the leaders on this issue, dr. phil gingrey. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from georgia is recognized for two minutes. mr. gingrey: madam speaker, thank you, and i thank the
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chairman for yielding, the gentleman from new jersey just gave atry butions to so -- gave tribute to so many members. the preemie act, a lot of statistics that some people may not be aware of, one is the fact that about 2/3 of all infant deaths in the first year of life are among the preterm infants. and in 2008 12.3% of all live births, over 500,000 babies were born preterm. madam speaker, let me put it a little bit in context. prematurity or preterm birth is by definition a birth earlier than 37 weeks. those children are usually not
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the problem. they're not the ones that end up with permanent disabilities, but there's a subset of prematurity, maybe sometimes referred to as immaturity, children that are born as early as 20 weeks, all the way up to 37 weeks. and those children are the ones that very often, if they survive, are left with permanent long-term disabilities. we see a lot of folks on the hill that come down the halls or office buildings and sometimes they're in wheelchairs, sometimes they're visually impaired, sometimes they're hearing impaired. but so many of those adults and children that we see on capitol hill were born prematurely. so a piece of legislation like this is hugely important. i'll end my remarks by just making it a little personal. my wife, and i have 13 grandchildren and the oldest will be 15 years old in about three weeks and they were born
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at 26 weeks. they each weighed one pound, 12 ounces, and thank god they are virtually unimpaired today and in the eighth grade and doing well. but it tugs at your heart strings. this is something that's hugely important. the graduate medical education piece, if i could have another 30 seconds, mr. chairman. mr. pitts: i yield another 30 seconds. mr. gingrey: i thank the chairman. the graduate medical education piece is very important, because these children's hospitals see so many of these young kids, in fact 50% or more of their patient population are medicaid. and they need this funding for continuing medical education for residents, pediatric residents. so i'll just conclude with that and just say how proud i am to be supportive of such a great piece of legislation and i yield back, madam speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from new jersey. mr. pallone: thank you, madam speaker. i'd like to yield now to the
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sponsor of the house preemie act, the gentlewoman from california, mrs. etchue, such time as he she -- ms. eshoo, such time as she may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from california is recognized. ms. eshoo: i thank the gentleman. madam speaker, i'm very proud to rise in support of the preemie act legislation that i introduced with congressman leonard lance. he's been a terrific partner, not only on this legislation but on other pieces of legislation that we've moved through the energy and commerce committee and i salute him. this bill will expand research, education and prevention of preterm births. as the mother of two children i know how precious the earliest part of life is and it's our responsibility to do everything we can to make sure that our little ones begin their lives with more than a fighting chance. each year, as was stated, each
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year half a million babies are born prematurely in our country, and preterm birth is the leading cause of newborn mortality and the second leading cause of infant mortality. babies born even a few weeks too early can require weeks to months of hospitalization after birth, and premature birth can sometimes lead to developmental delays and disability later in life. in addition to the emotional and physical toll of prematurity, there are significant health care costs to families, to our medical systems and our economy. a 2006 report -- i don't think the house is in order, madam speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman is correct. the house will be in order. will all members please take conversations off the floor? the gentlewoman may proceed.
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ms. eshoo: a 2006 report by the institute of medicine found the costs associated with preterm birth in the united states was $26.2 billion annually or $51,600 per infant born preterm. these are staggering amounts of dollars. and while employers, private insurers and individuals bear about half the costs of health care for these infants, 40% is paid for by medicaid. so it's in the best interest of healthy babies, hopeful families and the budget of our country to decrease preterm birth. the good news is our investment in preventing prematurity is paying off. in 2006 i introduced and congress passed the first-ever comprehensive preemie act, and prematurity rates have declined since then. so this is very good news.
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the better news is that today we're re-authorizing this law, which holds important programs which will build upon the momentum of the original law and provide us with new tools and knowledge to improve the lives and health of america's mothers and children. the preemie act has been packaged with other important pediatric health bills. i thank the chairman of the subcommittee, mr. pitts, the chairman of our full committee, mr. upton, the ranking member of the full committee as well as mr. pallone and all of our colleagues. you know very well, madam speaker, that we come to this place to do good things for our country to strengthen our nation. how proud i am that we are living up to that in presenting this bill here today. in closing i would also like to
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thank aaron kaselneck-wise of my staff who has worked on this bill as if it were the most important thing she could do in her life, understanding that it is one of the most important things she could do in her life for children and our country. to the american academy of pediatricians who have been so magnificent in instructing all of us on our work on this legislation. and a pick shoutout to dr. fill pizzo, the -- phil pizzo, the dean of the stanford school of medicine, a pediatrician himself, who also worked at the national institutes of health. with that i'll yield back the balance of my time. thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields back. the gentleman from pennsylvania. >> madam speaker, i yield 2 1/2
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minutes to the gentleman from michigan, the chairman of the full committee, mr. upton. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan is recognized for 2 1/2 minutes. mr. upton: i, too, want to commend the republicans and democrats who worked very, very hard to get this legislation to the floor and hopefully to the president's desk as soon as we can. particularly chairman pitts and ranking member pallone, leonard lance and eshoo, lois capps, and the staff on both sides. i made a commitment to all these members early on that we would work very diligently to get this legislation here and we are finally here. madam speaker, this bill, s. 1440, known as the preemie re-authorization act, is designed to strengthen health care for kids, particularly vulnerable kids. not only does the bill re-authorize the preemie act, it also includes the re-authorization of the children's hospital graduate medical education program, and
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it authorizes the national pediatric research network. the original preemie act i sponsored brought attention to the problems related to preterm birth. and since its passage, the preterm birth rate has declined. good news. but despite that improvement, according to the c.d.c., still half a million babies are born prematurely every year in this country. that's one out of eight. we can and we must do better. this re-authorization will continue to strengthen the ongoing effort to track, prevent and treat prematurity. ensuring that every child has a healthy start and a very start to a healthy and productive future. madam speaker, this brings us a step closer to provide more health to the kids with unmet health needs, particularly those with rare pediatric and genetic diseases. i met a number of times the kennedies, whose wonderful little daughters, who are
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affectionately known in our office as sleeping beauty and cinderella, they have a rare disease called spinal muscular atrophy and it's hard to do research into these diseases due to the small number of kids with that disease. but today we're working to provide families like the kennedys and so many others who are helping to find an -- a treatment. networks and consortia will be comprised of leading institutions that will coordinate those research efforts. with the passage of the children's hospital graduate medical education in 1999, three standing children's hospitals began receiving funds -- 30 additional seconds? mr. pitts: i yield. mr. upton: they began receiving
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funds. as a result the number of pediatricians in the u.s. has grown steadily. today over 40% of the pediatricians and pediatric specialists are trained in the 57 free-standing children's hospitals that receive this funding. a proven track record. we need to get it done and again i congratulate the members on the floor today for getting this bill to hopefully to the president's desk before the year is out. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from new jersey. mr. pallone: thank you, madam speaker. i'd like to yield now to the gentlewoman from california who's the democratic sponsor of the house national pediatric research network act of 2012, which is the second title of the legislation before us, mrs. capps. the speaker pro tempore: for how much time does the gentleman yield? mr. pallone: such time as she may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman is recognized. mrs. capps: i want to acknowledge being in the chair
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as my friend. madam speaker, i rise in strong support of the preemie re-authorization act. this is an important bill to improve the health outcomes of pregnant women and their babies and it shows our nation's commitment to the emotionally troubling incident of preterm birth. while this is enough reason for me to support this legislation, i'd like to highlight two additional sections of the bill that will improve the health and well-being of not only newborns but as our children as they grow. first, it includes re-authorization of the children's hospital graduate medical education program. this is a critical investment in both the health of our kids and in the health of our economy by bringing new talented individuals into the health care work force. my years as a school nurse i know the difficulty that children, especially those with special needs, health care needs, experience when they look for a pediatric specialist. over the years we have seen how
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chgme programs have made immeasurable impact on alleviating that burden, allowing these children and these families to focus on healing. i am proud to be an original co-sponsor of in legislation and will continue to champion it in the house. while we must ensure that the providers are available for our kids, we are still far behind on too many important diagnostics, cures and treatments for many of our ailing children, and that is why this bill also includes the national pediatric research network act, a bill that i co-authored with my colleague, representative cathy mcmorris rodgers. this legislation will help strengthen and coordinate our nation's research on pete add rick diseases. it -- pediatric diseases. all children may benefit, especially those who have rare diseases. and it expands the geographic scope of research, giving sick kids easier access to research programs and clinical trials. moreover, this bill places an added emphasis on researching
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children's rare diseases like spinal muscular atrophy, as my clean, mr. upton, has noted. the low prevalence of these diseases makes them particularly hard to research, and yet thee diseases have such a marked impact on the lives of far too many families and communities, like the strong family of santa barbara. my constituents, bill and victoria strong, have worked tirelessly on behalf of their daughter, and all children with spinal muscular atrophy and other rare diseases. the work they've done to help research is going to help families all across the nation. i thank them and i thank you. i also wanted to thank the leadership of the energy and commerce committee, chairman upton, ranking member waxman, chairman pitts, ranking member pallone for their dedication to this bill and to the staff, especially to ruth, for working across the aisle and across that capitol that bring a strong bill now to the floor.
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i ask my colleagues to support this bipartisan bill. i urge swift passage in the senate so we can improve the health and well-being of all infants and children and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields back. the gentleman from pennsylvania. mr. pitts: madam speaker, i yield two minutes to the gentleman from new jersey, mr. lance, the leader on this issue. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new jersey is recognized for two minutes. mr. lance: thank you, madam speaker. and it's wonderful to see you in the chair and i congratulate you on your magnificent service to the people of missouri and the nation. i rise in strong support of s. 1440, to re-authorize the 2006 preemie act, provide important continued research, education and intervention in the national effort to reduce preterm birth. madam speaker, our nation's premature birth rate is one of the highest in the world, and as the leading cause of newborn death in the united states, infants born just a few weeks too soon can face serious
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health challenges and are at risk for life-long risk of disabilities. premature births costs our economy billions of dollars per year. and while the medical community has made great strides in identifying the risk factors associated with premature births, far too many premature births have no known cause. that's why the members of the house and senate have worked in a bipartisan and bicameral fashion to re-authorize the 2006 preemie act so that we may continue to spur innovative solutions that will ultimately lead not just to healthier babies but lower annual health care costs. i thank chairman upton and chairman pitts and ranking member waxman and ranking member pallone for their steadfast leadership on this issue as well as senators lamar alexander and michael bennett. once again, i commend congresswoman anna eshoo of california for working on an
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important issue to the health and well-being of the american people. while many complain about the partisan nature of congress, we have worked in a cooperative fashion on this and other issues as has the entire energy and commerce committee. and it is in that bipartisan spirit that i ask all of my colleagues to join with us in support of the preemie act re-authorization bill so that we as a nation will be able to continue our focus on premature birth research and prevention, and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from new jersey. mr. pallone: i have no additional speakers, madam speaker, so if you don't then i would simply ask that we support this legislation and pass it on a bipartisan basis, and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from pennsylvania. mr. pitts: madam speaker, i have no further speakers. i urge support for this
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bipartisan legislation and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass senate 1440, as amended. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed, and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. and without objection the title is amended. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from texas rise? >> madam speaker, i move to
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suspend the rules and pass the bill h.r. 1845 as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 1845, a bill to provide for a study on issues relating to access to intervene us immune globulin, ivig, in a demonstration project to examine the benefits of providing coverage and payment for items and services necessary to administer ivig in the home. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from texas, mr. brady, and the gentleman from wisconsin, mr. kind, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from texas. mr. brady: madam speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members have five legislative days in which to revise and extend their remarks and to include extraneous material on the subject of the bill under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. brady: madam speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. brady: i too want to add my thanks and appreciation to my classmate on her years of
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dedication and just stellar service to the united states of america, on behalf of your wonderful state. thank you. some of you may remember david, the little boy in the bubble. he was a constituent from shenandoah, texas. who passed away at the age of 12 after living many years of his life in aster ilenvironment at the texas children's -- in a sterile environment at a texas children's hospital. his mom is the champion for david and foreother patients who were born -- and for other patients who were born with a disease. she is a friend and a constituent and has worked so hard to help those patients impacted with that disease. for years now carol anne and i and many others have been fighting to change a law that could help patients like david. intervenes i immune globulin or
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ivig therapy is a vie stal step for treating patients with certain life-threatening diseases. these are patients for whom virtually every trip outside is potentially deadly. for the 250,000 americans with primary immune deficiency disease, there's no place more dangerous than going to a hospital for treatment. this is why home ivig treatment prevents people from being exposed to common illnesses that may make you and i miserable for a day or two, but could be deadly for patients with suppressed immune systems. regular access to ivig therapy means a better quality of life, less disability, potentially the difference between life and death. unfortunately today current law excludes from medicare coverage the items and the services necessary to administer this ivig therapy in the home. where doctors tell us patients
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with compromised immune systems can benefit the most. the medicare ivig act to date requires the centers for medicare and medicaid services to do a couple of things. establishes a three-year demonstration project to cover these items and services necessary to do this therapy in the home, evaluates the impacts of the demonstration project on access for these medicare beneficiaries, and realizes the appropriateness of implementing a new methodology for ivig in all care settings under medicare part b and updates the previous report on this by the assistant secretary of planning and evaluation. it's my intent that the required study consider the impact of lag time with respect to data usage and determine the average sale price and recommendation to reduce the lag time to ensure more accurate pricing for ivig and report whether home infusion saves the medicare program tax dollars by improving access to
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all care settings. the medicare payment advisory committee recently looked at home infusion, including the access problem for medicare beneficiaries with pidd, and the june med pack report reported that a target expansion of home infusion coverage, focusing on certain drugs, would have more likelihood of saving. drugs with a narrow indication, precise diagnosic criteria like ivig are less likely to have a woodwork effect then drugs with broad uses or imprecise diagnosic criteria. midpac's report also highlighted that fixing the home infusion therapy or benefit for beneficiaries may save money because some of the other covered therapies for these patients are more expensive. i expect, madam speaker, the study required by this bill will give us more information about potential savings from giving people access to the right kind of care, reducing their exposure to germs and other settings and
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increased compliance with the prescribed therapy. there may be a lot of division partisanship in congress right now, but not on this bill. i'd like to thank my esteemed colleague, representative doris matsui of california, for her leadership and just tremendous hard work on this important bill. we have here today a solid bipartisan bill in both the house and senate joining together in support of medicare ivig access. and at this point i would reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from wisconsin. mr. kind: thank you, madam speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. kind: madam speaker, i rise in strong support of h.r. 1845. it's a combination of two strong bipartisan, commonsense bills before the house today. i want to thank the gentleman on the ways and means committee for his support on this important legislation. and as one of the co-authors of the smart act, one of the bills that have been combine ded today with representative tim murphy, an original co-sponsor of the
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medicare ivig access act, i am glad these two bipartisan bills have been combined and brought to the floor for consideration and hopefully passage later today. the smart act had 139 bipartisan co-sponsors,ed medicare ivig access act with 65 bipartisan co-sponsors, a perfect example of at times democrats and republicans joining forces and getting something done around this place. and hopefully that spirit will continue in the days to come with the difficult decisions that face this body. i'd like to thank my good friend, tim murphy, for his leadership and hard work in moving the smart act through the energy and commerce committee. i'd also like to recognize the extraordinary broad stakeholder coalition that has worked so hard to help get the smart act on the floor today. particularly the american association for justice and the mark coalition. finally i want to thank representative brady and doris matsui for their tireless efforts on behalf of the medicare ivig access act.
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their legislation has a step toward ensuring all seniors are able to access life-saving ivig drugs in their own home. but let me just take a few moments to discuss the need for the smart act. the smart act reforms the badly broken medicare secondary payment system. for background, the medicare secondary payment system requires medicare to recoup the cost of hospital and doctor bills for a senior if their injuries are the responsibility of a private insurer or some other third party. so far so good. making sure medicare doesn't pay for injuries caused by another third party is good policy to help keep medicare solvent. the problem is that under the current system seniors and parties that want to settle a claim often cannot determine how much they owe medicare. that often results in the settlements to collapse. the result is that seniors are denied settlements to compensate for their injuries, the medicare trust fund is never reimbursed, that's bad for seniors, it's bad for the medicare program.
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we're talking about cases where seniors are trying to give money back to the government and the government simply won't say how much they owe it. it's outrageous that seniors can't even give money back to medicare that the government is owed because the system is broken down. at a time when congress is considering cuts to the medicare benefits and provider payments, we need to at least make sure medicare is getting the money seniors want to send it. the smart act will improve the medicare secondary payment system by making the government work more efficiently, reducing unnecessary burdens and waste, speeding the repayment of amounts owed to the medicare trust fund. the best way to demonstrate the need for the legislation is with a few examples of the current systems -- system's unfairness and outright absurdity. i have a handful of demand letters here sent by c.m.s. to seniors asking to be repaid $1.59. or $2.81. or $4.82. or even $36.75.
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those amounts c.m.s. has sought to recoup from seniors is far less than the amount it actually costs c.m.s. to pursue these claims. that's penny wise and a pound foolish. the smart act makes sure c.m.s. is only pursuing medicare secondary payment claims that will recoup at least the cost that it takes c.m.s. to pursue these claims. that's commonsense reform. this bill makes financial sense for medicare but it will also make a meaningful difference for seniors who are awaiting settlements that are held up by medicare's process today. in fact, i heard the story of one gentleman who fell on a retailer's handicap ramp while using a walker. now, mr. law cut his left hand, he hit his head on the fence alongside the ramp, he and the retailer discussed the medical charges and they agreed to settle for $2,000. it took 18 months and eight written exchanges with c.m.s. to resolve this simple m.s.p. claim, which delayed settlement claim by the same 18 months, plus mr. law actually passed away during the extended time
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frame. we can do better for seniors, we can get medicare the money it's owed a lot faster. this legislation would accomplish that. that's just a few of the examples of why the smart act is needed. the toll this broken system takes on seniors and the burden it imposes on businesses is unacceptable. i urge my colleagues to vote for h.r. 1845, to support this commonsense reform, including the ivig program. and, madam speaker, since this may be the last time i have a chance to address you and the chair, i too want to echo the sediments of so many of our colleagues to congratulate you on such a distinguished career here in the house. you did well in representing your constituents back home in missouri. we'll miss you as a colleague, someone who tried hard to work in finding bipartisan, commonsense solutions to the challenges facing our nation and of course we wish you all the best in your future endeavors. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from texas. mr. brady: madam speaker, i ask unanimous consent to include in
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the record an exchange of letters between the ways and means committee and energy and commerce related to this bill. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. brady: at this time i would yield two minutes to the chairman of the health subcommittee, a long-time fighter for patients and those on medicare, the gentleman from california, mr. herger. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california is recognized for two minutes. mr. herger: i thank my friend from texas. madam speaker, i rise today in strong support of h.r. 1845 as amended. the medicare ivig access and strengthening medicare and repaying taxpayers act of 2012. this legislation would create a three-year demonstration project to provide up to 4,000 medicare beneficiaries suffering from primary immuneow deficiency diseases with in-home coverage of ivig. medicare beneficiaries with p.i.t.d. -- p.i.d. need the
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biological ivig to boost their immune system so they can fight off infection and maintain a high quality of life. medicare currently offers comprehensive coverage of ivig treatments in the physician office and hospital setting, but not when ivig is administered in the home. this flawed payment policy encourages medicare beneficiaries to receive care in the most costly setting. under this demonstration project, medicare part b would cover the home administration costs, including the trained medical professional who administers the biological, allowing up to 4,000 beneficiaries with p.i.d. to receive ivig treatments in their home. importantly beneficiaries who receive ivig in their home can
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avoid the risk of infection inherent in alternative treatment settings. the h.h.s. secretary would be required to issue a report to congress detailing the impact this demonstration project had on beneficiary access to care and whether or not c.m.s. should permanently change its ivig coverage policy. according to c.b.o., the cost of this one-time demonstration are fully offset by permanently reforming medicare's secondary payer rules as detailed in the smart act. the smart act will help ensure that taxpayers would not be stuck with a medicare bill for ins dense caused when another party is liable or negligence. the smart -- negligent. the smart act also makes important changes so that the arcane medicare rules would no
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longer be an impediment to parties resolving their indifferences. mr. brady: i yield another minute to the gentleman from california. mr. herger: madam speaker, we need to protect the medicare trust funds and we need to have an efficient, consistent and clear process to resolve these claims. and the smart act does exactly that. i urge my colleagues to join me in support of this important legislation. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from wisconsin. mr. kind: thank you, madam speaker. and, madam speaker, i want to thank my good friend and the gentleman from california for his support of 1845, in particular the smart act, and congratulate him as well on a distinguished career, since he will be retiring at the end of this session of congress as well. but at this time i'd like to recognize the gentlelady from california and the principal author of the medicare ivig act, ms. matsui, such time as she may
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consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman is recognized. ms. matsui: i want to say, madam speaker, thank you for your wonderful years of service. we miss you in this chamber and we wish you well. madam speaker, i rise in support -- strong support of h.r. 1845, the medicare ivig access act. i'd like to thank congressman brady for his hard work on this legislation as well as congressman kind in the smart act provision of this legislation. primary immune defishes -- deficiency diseases is a disease that causes a person's immune system to function properly. unlike most of us who are able to fight common infectious diseases, patients with untreated pidd can become seriously ill from a simple
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cold, virus or a cut on their arm. patients with pidd are generally treated with intravenous immune globulin, a complex drug that provides them temporary immune system. every three to four weeks, patients receive an i.v. treatment for about two to four weeks per treatment. two to four hours, rather, per treatment. to maintain a healthy immune system, they must have this treatment for the rest of their lives. people with commercial insurance typically receive care in any of three settings -- hospital outpatient departments, a physician's office or at home administered by a nurse. for many patients, receiving their carat home is optimal as it greatly reduces the risk of infection. however, the medicare beneficiaries with pidd, the program pays for home infusion of ivig but does not cover the
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nursing services and supplies. as you can imagine, a 74-year-old medicare recipient on a fixed income is not capable of paying the several hundred dollars a month necessary for the nurse to provide ivig infusions in their home. as a result, many patients are forced to receive their treatment in a hospital setting, oftentimes increasing the likelihood of infection, pneumonia and expensive stay in a hospital billed to medicare. madam speaker, this does not make sense for the patient or for medicare. and that's why congressman brady and i introduced the medicare ivig access act. madam speaker, this legislation is budget neutral and fully paid for. h.r. 1845 creates a three-year demonstration project capped at 4,000 patients in which the nursing services and supplies associated with home infusion of ivig will be covered for medicare beneficiaries with
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pidd. i believe that this project will mirror the results of studies of patients with commercial insurance that found increased compliance, fewer infections and savings for patients infused at home versus the hospital. madam speaker, patients with rare genetic diseases should not see their access to care diminished when they become eligible for medicare. h.r. 1845 fixes the gap in medicare coverage that unfairly restrict patient's access to ivig and disrupts their continuity of care. i strongly encourage my colleagues to vote for this critically important legislation, and i yield back the e of my time. the speaker ore: the gentlewoman yields back. the gentleman from texas. mr. brady: madam speaker, i'm pleased to yield five minutes to the lead author, the champion of the smart act, mr. murphy of pennsylvania. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from pennsylvania is recognized for five minutes. mr. murphy: i thank the gentleman and, madam speaker, may i add accolades to your
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work for the people of missouri. particularly my ancestors who found murphy settlement, now farmington district, you've done it well. lorraine of washington county, pennsylvania, then aged 73, suffered injuries so severe from a car accident that she will never fully recover. after the accident, she underwent a difficult surgery. she contracted mrsa. sadly, lorraine's condition has worsened and she now suffers from dementia and now must receive 24/7 carat a nursing home. the physical -- care at a nursing home. the physical pain mirrors the emotional care. she lost her husband and then last year her only child passed away. lorraine's story is heartbreaking and tragic and it's depressing to learn that medicare is working against
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lorraine's interest. mountain fall of 2010, lorraine's family and the automobile insurer for the other driver in the accident reached a monetary settlement. the insurer agreed to pay her medical bills and she would collect damages. first, her health insurer, medicare, had to be repaid. but the center for medicare and medicaid will not tell the auto insurer how much is owed to the medicare trust fund. they want to give her a settlement but their bureaucracy is standing in the way. now, there are thousands of cases just like lorraine in the congressional district across the country, but we now have a chance to fix this problem and make sure that lorraine and her family receive what they are rightlyfully owed by passing h.r. -- rightfully owed by passing h.r. 1845. our bill, the strengthening medicare and taxpayers act, or the smart act, will recoup billions of dollars owed by insurance companies to the medicare trust fund quickly and
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eliminate waste within c.m.s. the smart act, which has nearly 140 bipartisan co-sponsors, in the support of trial lawyers, patient advocates, defense attorneys and the u.s. chamber of commerce requires that medicare provide settling parties with accurate information about the total cost of medical bills when the parties announce a settlement is near. the congressional budget office has looked at a bill and found it will save millions in overhead costs at medicare. the current medicare secondpayer to bureaucracy is having their social security checks garnished and their coverage denied. this bill fixes those issues and makes sure that it does not stand in the way of settlement. right now insurers are walking away from settlements because of the second-payer statute. seniors get nothing and the taxpayers are not repaid. by enacting this legislation, congress can help lorraine and thousand of senior citizens who are needlessly suffering
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because medicare is not operating effectively and efficiently. i want to thank chairman upton, camp, ranking members waxman and levin and kind. i want to extend a special thanks to their hard staff. without them this legislation would not be moving forward. this is good government. this savings taxpayers money. i urge its adoption and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from arkansas. i mean, from wisconsin. the chair needs new contact lenses. mr. kind: at this time i'd like to yield to my very good friend, the gentleman from new jersey, one of the new leaders of the energy and commerce committee, mr. pallone, such time as he may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new jersey is recognized for such time as he may consume. mr. pallone: i want to thank the gentleman from wisconsin. madam speaker, i rise to lend my support to h.r. 1845, as amended. this bill combines two pieces
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of legislation, h.r. 1845, which provides the demonstration for the coverage of home infusion of intravenous immune globulin and h.r. 1063, which makes improvements to the medicare second payer process. however, i'd like to note my concerns about the process. our committee acted on h.r. 1063, and i commend the chairman to ensure it was a bipartisan product. but we did not act on the ivig legislation. so it's my hope had a in the future we can avoid situations like this. the medicare secondary payer provisions of this bill will reduce the burdens of the secondary payer process for beneficiaries and other stakeholders. most importantly, the legislation will do so in a way that ensures we're also protecting taxpayer dollars and the medicare trust fund. i do worry, however, that the m.s.p. bill does not include
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administrative funding for the centers of medicare and medicaid services, or c.m.s. the stakeholders are currently frustrated by the process does not move fast enough. but here we are on top of an already slow process without new funding. this will simply burden the agency and make it more difficult to get to resolution on secondary payer cases in a timely fashion. so i hope that in some future date we can provide a reasonable sum for the agency to allow them to be better equipped to speed this process along. one additional point on m.s.p. resolving disputes of claims posted on the web portal is not to sue plant the process. i think it's clear in the language. i should note there should not be ambiguity. in addition to m.s.p. changes, this bill also provides for a
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three-year demonstration related to ivig. ivig sat blood derived treatment that helps strengthen the immune systems of immune deficient patients and prevents paralysis of some autoimmune diseases and neuropathies. medicare beneficiaries has made home infusion as a part of the benefit. however, equipment, nursing services and supplies necessary for the home infusion are not reimbursed. now, congresswoman matsui made sure it's included in this package today. she worked so tirelessly on this ivig issue, and i'm hopeful that this demonstration project she has championed will both save money for the medicare program and improve access to needed services for this vulnerable population, and i thank her for her leadership on behalf of these patients. i want to thank chairman upton for working with us on these two issues and looking forward
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to the next congress that we'll find areas of common ground to work on. so thank you, madam speaker, and i reserve the balance of my time -- i yield. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from texas. mr. brady: madam speaker, if there are no other speakers at this time -- mr. kind: madam speaker, i have no other speakers. i ask my colleagues to support h.r. 1845 and i'd yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas. mr. brady: in closing -- i yield myself such time as i may consume. in closing, i want to thank my counterpart, doris matsui, for her great work on this issue. and i so appreciate the leadership and partnership of mr. kind and mr. murphy in combining these two important health care bills in order to both provide safer, more affordable access to care for those with compromised immune deficiencies as well as finding ways to save money with the important medicare program and the smart act. i want to thank dan elling, staff director of the ways and
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means subcommittee on health, as well as jennifer sefarian for her leadership of ways and means committee. but i especially want to thank my constituent and friend, crarle ann, the mom of david, for her -- carol ann, the mom of david, for her hard work on behalf of these patients. and the founder of the immunodeficiency network, for years who came up here asking for this help in change. today, this congress, republicans and democrats alike, joined together in providing that help and access. i urge support for this bill and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 1845, as amended. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended -- the gentleman from
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texas. mr. brady: i ask for the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. all those in favor of taking the vote by the yeas and nays will rise and remain standing until counted. a sufficient number having arisen, the yeas and nays are ordered. pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, further proceedings on this motion will be postponed.
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the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to clause of rule 20, proceedings will resume on motions to suspend the rules previously postponed. votes will be taken in the following order. h.r. 6672, by the yeas and nays. h.r. 1845, by the yeas and nays. house resolution 668, de novo. first electronic vote will be conducted as a 15-minute vote. remaining electronic votes will be conducted as five-minute votes. the unfinished business is the vote on the motion of the gentleman from michigan, mr. rogers, to suspend the rules and pass h.r. 6672, on which the yeas and nays are ordered. the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 6672, a bill to re-authorize certain programs under the public health service act and the federal food, drug, and cosmetic act with respect to public health security and all hazards preparedness and response, and for other
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purposes. the speaker pro tempore: the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill. members will record their votes by electronic device. this is a 15-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
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we know americans are told not to carry their social security cards in case their wallets are stolen, yet seniors are told they must carry their medicare card which displays their social security number. not overwhelm does this not make sense, it puts seniors at risk. the largest seniors organization
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in america agrees, according to aarp, quote, all medicare patients must carry a benefits card that displays their social security number. such easy access to sensitive information makes the cards a hot target for identity thieves who want to file false claims. mr. speaker, the medicare identity theft prevention act of 2012 requires a second of health and human services in consultation with the commissioner of social security to take action to ensure social security numbers no longer are used on medicare cards. . it requires the secretary to develop a cost-effective way to do that with as little impact as possible on medicare beneficiaries and health care providers. further, funds from the medicare improvement fund are
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made available to pay for implementation costs. according to c.b.o., the cost of this bill is fully offset and would not increase the deficit. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from washington is correct. the house is not in order. will the house please be in order. the gentleman from oregon is correct. the house is not in order. thank you. the gentleman from texas may resume. mr. johnson: lastly, the bill directs g.a.o. to conduct a study to determine whether the medicare program should use smart card technology, an idea advanced by my colleagues, jim gerlach of pennsylvania and earl blumenauer of oregon to prevent waste, fraud and abuse in the medicare program. members should know this isn't the first time c.m.s. has been directed to act. starting in 2002, g.a.o. first called for ending the use of
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social security numbers on government documents. then in 2005, the fiscal year 2006, labor-hhs bill urged the secretary to accelerate planning for removing social security numbers and asked for a report. then in 2007, o.m.b. issued a directive to all federal agencies to develop plans for reducing the use of social security numbers. and then in 2008, my colleague, lloyd doggett, and i brought a bill to the floor to end the use of social security numbers on medicare cards. most recently, at an august, twelve, joint hearing, they talked about a lack of a serious plan to stop displaying the social security number. while c.m.s. fails to act, both the public and private sector
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are working to protect their customers and businesses from identity theft. the department of defense and veterans affairs are removing social security numbers from their i.d. and medical cards, and i applaud them from taking that action. private health insurance and many others ended the use of social security numbers on public documents a long time ago. and even c.m.s. knows better. it won't allow insurers in the medicare advantage and part d drug benefit program to use social security numbers on their enrollees' cards. the time to protect our nearly 50 million americans carrying medicare cards with their personal information is long overdue. it's high time that congress passes this commonsense bill. there's no reason why american seniors have to continue to be put at risk of i.d. theft.
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we need to act right now, and i urge all my colleagues to vote yes and pass medicare identity theft prevention act today. with that, mr. speaker, i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas, mr. johnson, reserve his time. the gentleman from texas, mr. doggett. mr. doggett: i thank you. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. doggett: thank you, mr. speaker. and thank you, chairman johnson, for your leadership on this. i want to concur fully with the remarks that you've made. as you've indicated, in 2008, i filed this piece of legislation with chairman johnson's help at that time. we worked together. we passed it through the house, and the senate failed to act. and since that time, whether it was under a republican or democratic administration, there has not been sufficient priority placed on this by the center for medicare services to address this question of privacy. it is a serious matter. it clearly requires legislation
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and this time hopefully the senate will respond to our bipartisan initiative and get it passed into law. there are indeed about 48 million americans, seniors, individuals with disabilities who are carrying in their wallet or purse today something that makes them vulnerable to identity theft, and that something is their medicare card. apart from the social security card itself, the medicare card is the most frequently issued government document that displays a social security number. and that practice invites foul play. it was back in 2007 when the bush administration, recognizing this danger by the overyue of social security numbers, -- overuse of social security numbers, sent out a directive to eliminate the use of social security numbers and explore alternative identity fires. despite this direct -- identifiers. despite this directive, they have not removed the number
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from medicare cards. although we have bipartisan agreement on the severity of the problem, we also have had bipartisan administrative inaction when it comes to addressing it. clearly we need congressional action. to protect both the savings and the piece of mind of medicare beneficiaries, this bipartisan legislation would require medicare to take steps that private companies, the department of defense and the department of veterans affairs have already taken to protect the identifies of -- identities that they serve. when a senior or an individual with disabilities hands over their medicare card to a health care provider or elsewhere, they are handing over the keys of their identity. inaction here again is simply unacceptable. seniors who have saved, who have built a lifetime of
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financial security and their reputations are all at stake. their savings and their credit should not be put needlessly at risk if someone steals a medicare card or gets misplaced or left with a provider by mistake. medicare should make sure it does no harm to the financial security and credit rating of those that it serves with health care security. this act will help to ensure that the government better protect our seniors denying thieves access to this critical data. inaction would jeopardize in a continuing way the safety of so many. this legislation when we previously introduced it was supported by consumers union, the national community to preserve social security and medicare, the elder justice coalition. seniors confront many threats to retirement security these days, but this bill will be directed toward one that we can do something about immediately
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and that's those who would swindle our seniors. i urge adoption of the measure and reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas, mr. doggett, reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from texas, mr. johnson. mr. johnson: thank you, mr. chairman. mr. speaker, i yield one minute to the gentlelady from kansas, ms. jenkins, a member of the committee on ways and means. the gentlelady from kansas is -- the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady from kansas is recognized for one minute. ms. jenkins: i'd like to commend chairman johnson and representative doggett for their work on this legislation. there are nearly 50 million medicare beneficiaries who were told to carry their medicare cards with them at all times while simultaneously being told not to carry their social security card. they are told that carrying their social security card in their purse or wallet puts them at risk for identity theft which is a problem that affects one million seniors yearly. the irony is that the medicare
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cards all feature beneficiaries' social security numbers prominently. that means our seniors are in a tight spot. they are at risk of identity theft simply by carrying their medicare card with them. i support passage of this bill because it ensures that a person's social security number is no longer printed on their medicare card. this bipartisan, commonsense measure will ensure that the 115,000 medicare enrollees in my district will be safe from identity theft. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman's time has expired. the gentleman from texas, mr. doggett. mr. doggett: mr. speaker, one addition to this bill from 2008 deals with the question of medicare fraud. the gentleman from oregon is the co-sponsor of legislation dealing with that and a member of the ways and means health subcommittee. at this time i yield him four minutes to discuss this important addition. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from oregon is recognized for four minutes. mr. blumenauer: thank you. i appreciate the gentleman's courtesy and i strongly identify with the persistence
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and the eloquence from chairman johnson and my friend, mr. doggett, to deal with this problem of identity theft. the hearing was a little unnerving. i appreciate the follow-through and hopefully something will happen. i identify strongly with the arguments he made. i want to focus on one other element, because it's directly related -- and i see my good friend, mr. bill rack is, on the floor -- mr. bilirakis, on the floor. we should be concerned about maybe learning another lesson from the department of defense who, as the chairman mentioned, is already using this for their purposes. being able to use an opportunity for a common access card for medicare will have very important application to the area of rampant medicare fraud. $60 billion is a number we have heard in our subcommittee. it could be more. it could be less, but it's a
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huge sum of money, and it compounds going forward. our first concern, however, should be about the quality of care for the senior citizens who receive medicare, and the common access card, being able to digitally track this information, provides security for these transactions. makes it less likely there will be mistakes, be able to follow up and follow through. second, it will in fact help us stop fraud. this is an area that has been relentlessly abused, where people order their changes in the order. sometimes orders are actually made that aren't -- that are entirely different than what people requested. having this secure card will enable people to be able to have the security of the transaction, know where it's at. greater accuracy of billing,
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track mistakes, stop fraud. i cannot say strongly enough that i think it's important for us to move. i appreciate the work that was done putting a study over the next two years about this provision. but with all due respect, i hope as this legislation works its way through congress, and i hope it is yet enacted while we are still here for the 112th congress, that we're able to be serious, not just about a two-year study. this is an area that we ought to be able to implement pilot projects right now across the country. it would make a difference for the administration. i think there's no question we could come to scale very quickly, help senior citizens and the reliability of the medicare coverage, reduce fraud and allow government to track our activities going forward. there's a lot of talk about the fiscal cliff and the need to save money and the back and
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forth that's going on here. but this provision that mr. gerlach and i are advancing is a simple, commonsense, bipartisan proposal that would help us right now improve service, save money and improve the reliability of the system. i would hope this is the sort of provision that would find favor by our colleagues in the house and with the administering -- administration. working together we can implement them sooner rather than later and have broader application for the great positive effect for medicare, for the taxpayers and i respectfully yield back my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas, mr. johnson. mr. johnson: thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, i yield three minutes to the gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. gerlach, who is a member of the committee on ways and means. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from pennsylvania is recognized for three minutes. mr. gerlach: thank you, mr. speaker. i want to first acknowledge the
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hard work and leadership of my colleague on the ways and means committee, mr. johnson, of texas as well as our committee chairman, mr. camp of michigan. both gentlemen recognized the urgency of finding practical solutions for protecting seniors and taxpayers against easily preventable waste, fraud and improper payments and the ever increasing threat of identity theft. whenever someone in washington proposes a new idea for shrinking costs and saving precious taxpayer dollars, we usually receive a barrage of questions from people concerned that they have to do with less and possibly see services they depend upon kurt tailed in some -- curtailed in some way. this would kick-start a process that would allow congress to cut an estimated $60 billion a in improper and fraudulent medicare payments. while making sure seniors enrolled in the medicare program receive the care and treatment they have earned. we are attempting to cut costs without restricting access to
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care. specifically, this legislation authorizes a study by the government accounting office, examining the benefits of a proposed pilot program to modernize the medicare card that almost every senior carries with him or her in a wallet or a pocketbook. under the proposed pilot program, as introduced in legislation by my colleague, congressman blumenauer and myself, the smart card technology would be used to provide tect personal information of medicare participants -- protect personal information of medicare participants, products that were never purchased and speed payments to doctors and hospitals while reducing costly benefit errors. it will access the health care they need, it will provide a narrow opening unscrupulous individuals to cheat taxpayers and seniors out of billions of dollars every year. the u.s. department of health and human services indicates that waste, fraud ambd abuse cost the medicare program about $60 billion a year. nearly 10% of the annual
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medicare budget or approximately $48 billion a year is lost to improper payments, according to a report issued by the government accountability office. that's a significant amount of human resources and financial resources that are better used helping our seniors pay for hospital visits, prescription drugs and other vital medical care. the department of defense has issued more than 20 million secure smart cards to authenticate and verify users to access to programs and facilities to. date the department deaf fence reports not a single access card has been counterfeited. we cannot stop improper payments to the medicare system until we find a way to know and verify who is authorized to provide and receive benefits. a comprehensive study is an important first step that will make sure we get the job done right for taxpayers, seniors, doctors and other health care providers. taxpayers and seniors deserve the protection against identity theft and fraud that this legislation would provide and i urge my colleagues to begin the process of putting in place a
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simple, low-cost solution to bringing the medicare card into the 21st century. i thank the gentleman for leading this effort and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from texas, mr. doggett. mr. doggett: at this time i would yield two minutes to the gentleman from new jersey and the ranking member of the health subcommittee on commerce committee, mr. pallone. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new jersey is recognized for two minutes. mr. pallone: thank you, mr. speaker, and i thank my colleague from texas. mr. speaker, i, like many of my colleagues, am concerned with the problem of identity theft, particularly identity theft from elderly individuals who can be viewed as easy victims by unscrupulous criminals. i think we all agree that a commonsense step to prevent identity theft and further protect beneficiaries is to remove beneficiary social security members from their medicare cards. but it's important to point out that this is not an easy as it would seem at first glance. medicare has dozens of claims processing systems, each that will need to be modified to accept the new beneficiary number.
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providers too will have to ensure the billing systems can accommodate the new numbers. we will need an extensive education campaign to ensure that a new numbering system or the issuance of new cards doesn't simply prevent a golden opportunity for unscrupulous individuals to find a new way to rip off seniors. now, i certainly support the policy goal of h.r. 1509, the medicare identity theft prevention act of 2012. this bill provides approximately $300 million for the secretary of h.h.s. to move forward on removing social security numbers from i.d. cards. yet we do not know whether that amount is sufficient and i am concerned that if we fail to provide sufficient funding for this task we may wind up with a mass confusion or even worse. i think we owe it to the medicare beneficiaries and providers to ensure that this worthy undertaking is done well. in addition, the bill allows for funding as a social security administration's cost but not the cost of the medicare agency itself and that's an issue that
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has to be addressed. so as we move forward, mr. speaker, we must make sure that the funding is sufficient and that both c.m.s. and s.s.a. can equitably access these funds. beneficiary identity security depends on it. and thank you, and i reserve the time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from texas, mr. johnson. mr. johnson: thank you. mr. speaker, i yield three minutes to the gentleman from california, mr. herger, also a member on the ways and means committee and chairman of the subcommittee on health. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california is recognized for three minutes. mr. herger: thank you. i thank my good friend from texas and, mr. speaker, i rise to speak in strong support of h.r. 1509 which is commonsense, bipartisan legislation that will protect our nation's seniors. i do not doubt that many of us have received letters from constituents who have faced problems due to their social security member being compromised -- number being
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compromised. over the years i've held a number of forums in my northern california district to raise awareness about identity theft and financial scams targeting senior citizens. i've heard complaints from many of these constituents that while the public increasingly understands the importance of safeguarding personal information, medicare isn't doing its part. with today's vote, we take the first step toward removing these numbers from the medicare cards that beneficiaries are encouraged to carry with them at all times. we've heard too many excuses over the years and it is becoming clear to me that c.m.s. simply isn't interested in protecting seniors and people with disabilities from identity theft. importantly, this legislation will not increase the deficit. h.r. 1509 also includes a study
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to examine the use of smart card technology in the medicare program. some technology stakeholders have expressed concerns that the direation of the two-year study -- duration of the two-year study, if g.a.o. is able to complete the study on a more expedited time frame, i would be happy to work with congressman gerlach and the technology community to shorten this deadline as the bill moves through the legislative process. given the inaction at c.m.s. on removing social security numbers from medicare cards, it is time for the congress to lead. it is time to take this long overdue, commonsense approach and protect america's seniors. i urge passage of h.r. 1509 and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california yields back his time. the gentleman from texas, mr. doggett. mr. doggett: i believe i'm
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prepared to yield back. do you have other speakers, chairman? one more? two more? i'll reserve then. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas, mr. doggett, reserves. the gentleman from texas, mr. johnson. mr. johnson: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield two minutes to the gentleman from minnesota, mr. paulsen. he's a member of the ways and means committee and an active member on the committee of human resources. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from minnesota is recognized for two minutes. mr. paulsen: i thank the gentleman for yielding. mr. speaker, i rise today in support of the medicare identity theft prevention act. with the constant growth of technology, and as an unfortunate result identity theft, i have received numerous inquiries from my constituents and in particular seniors about what we are doing and the need to protect people from identity theft. earlier this year i also held a seminar in my district with seniors about identity theft and it was very well attended. in 2010 nearly 7% of households were victims of identity theft. and of those households, over one million were headed by seniors. today nearly 50 million medicare
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cards display the social security emergency number. and social security numbers are absolutely one of the most valuable pieces of personal identity that we have. therefore making it a top target for criminals. for years the general accounting office and the social security special inspector general have recommended and asked congress to remove the social security numbers from medicare cards because it is an unnecessary risk for seniors. that's exactly what this legislation does. it will help prevent seniors from becoming victims of these types of theft and fraud by removing the social security number from those medicare cards. i am pleased to be a co-sponsor and actively support this legislation. this is common sense, this is bipartisan, there's no reason for delay. we can stop putting seniors at unnecessary risk. i want to thank in particular the subcommittee chairman, mr. johnson, as well as congressman doggett for their bipartisan leadership on this effort and bringing it to the floor before the end of the year. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from texas, mr. johnson.
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mr. johnson: mr. speaker, i yield two minutes to the gentleman from texas, mr. marchant. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas is recognized for how long? for two minutes. mr. marshall: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise -- mr. marchant: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise in support of this act. this is a commonsense, bipartisan bill that would establish cost-effective procedures to help protect the identity of all seniors. seniors are a high-risk demographic for identity theft. identity thieves have targeted seniors in my district in texas and across the country. this year's center for medicare services general services report found that more than a quarter million medicare beneficiaries have been potential victims of identity theft. most medicare cards currently use social security numbers as the identifier. by removing social security numbers from medicare cards, this bill gives seniors the identity protection that they
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deserve. seniors work their entire lives for financial security and that security should not be jeopardized due to preventable identity theft. the other federal programs and private insurance plans have made similar changes years ago and medicare beneficiaries should have the same level of identity protection and security. i am proud to support this legislation and urge my colleagues to do so. thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas yields back his time. the gentleman from texas, mr. doggett. mr. doggett: mr. chairman, i thank -- mr. speaker, i thank the gentleman from texas, my colleague, chairman johnson, and hope the senate will respond this time to our action and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from texas, mr. johnson. mr. johnson: thank you, will mr. doggett. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. johnson: mr. speaker, despite increasing pressure from this committee and this house, c.m.s. has refused to act to
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remove social security numbers from medicare cards. if c.m.s. won't act, we must. this commonsense bill is a vital step in protecting our nation's seniors from identity theft and we can't afford to put seniors at risk any longer. medicare beneficiaries won't -- want, need and deserve better. i deserve all my cleeling -- all my colleagues to vote yes and i hope the senate will act immediately to pass this legislation and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas yields back his time. all time having expired the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill h.r. 1509 as amended. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative -- mr. doggett: i object to the vote on the grounds that a quorum is not present and i make a point of order that a quorum is not present. . the speaker pro tempore: further proceedings on this motion will be postponed.
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>> mr. speaker, i move to suspend the rules and pass the bill h.r. 6655. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 6655, a bill to establish a commission to develop a national strategy and recommendations for reducing fatalities resulting from child abuse and neglect. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from michigan, mr. camp, and the gentleman from texas, mr. doggett, each will control 20 minutes. the gentleman from michigan is recognized. mr. camp: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members have five legislative days in which to revise and extend their remarks and to include extraneous material on the subject of the bill under
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consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. camp: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. camp: thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, i rise today in support of h.r. 6655, the protect our kids act of 2012. as we are too painfully reminded this week by the horrific tragedy in newtown, connecticut, for all the good this nation has done to lift up children we still have much more work to do. so, mr. speaker, before i get into my remarks about the bill, i first want to extend my heartfelt condolences to the victims and their loved ones struggling as we all are to understand this senseless assault on children and their educators. and while newtown is rightly receiving the nation's attention, what goes unnoticed far too often is the number of children that die each year in this country as a result of abuse and neglect. sadly their deaths often come at the hands of those who should be caring for them the most. state reports indicate that more than 1,500 children in the u.s. died from abuse or neglect in fiscal year 2010.
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and research shows that these reports may significantly understate the actual number of these fatalities. congress should do what it can to prevent these tragedies which is why this legislation is before us today. this legislation is a result of careful bipartisan work over the past couple of years. in 2010 i requested that the government accountability office, g.a.o., review what is known about the circumstances of child deaths and near-deaths resulting from abuse and neglect. state approaches to gathering and reporting this information and what steps the department of health and human services has taken to support the collection and accurate reporting of this information. g.a.o. completed its review in july of last year and presented its finding at a ways and means subcommittee on human resources hearing that same month. in their report g.a.o. said many more children die from abuse and neath are currently reported. they also reported that government agencies have different definitions of abuse and neglect and that administrative barriers hinder sharing of this information across agencies. following that hearing i worked
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with congressman doggett and i thank him for his bipartisan support, the ranking member of the subcommittee on human resources, to develop a legislative proposal to address these issues. and last week the subcommittee held another hearing to review this proposal. and finally, after almost two years of work, we're here on the house floor today to consider and pass this important bill. this bipartisan legislation will establish a commission charged with developing recommendations to reduce child death caused by abuse and neglect. the commission will study a variety of issues including data on fatalities, prevention methods and the adequacy of current programs before making recommendations. any federal agency affected by a recommendation of the commission will be required to report within six months on how it plans to address the recommendation. importantly this legislation is paid for and will not add to our deficit. mr. speaker, i urge my colleagues to vote in favor of this bipartisan bill and preventing a tragic death from
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our children of abuse and neglect. mr. speaker, i yield the remaineding of my time to mr. paulsen, and ask unanimous consent that he be allowed to control the time. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. the gentleman from texas. daw dawg thank you, mr. speaker. my thanks to chairman camp and chairman paulsen for consideration of this bill today and crafting it into the piece of legislation that it is. i rise in support of the protect our kids act, which representing an improved version over legislation that i introduced about a year ago. we are all reminded, as chairman camp indicated, by the tragedy in connecticut. each family touched by the damage, the deaths of these youngest americans. and in contrast, as with so many families, and in our family we share the joy of
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three little girls. as difficult as it is to conceive the wrong, the evil that occurred in connecticut so recently, it is similarly difficult to conceive of how many of our youngest americans are the subject of abuse and even death. we, through the protect our kids act, are seeking to have thoughtful consideration of what steps we can take to protect these most vulnerable children. we're not interested in another commission that just prepares another report that gets filed somewhere. we're interested in action coming from this commission. the original legislation, which was filed in a way that provided for its consideration in a number of committees, has been, in terms of jurisdiction, mirrored somewhat, but the objectives will explore every
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aspect of child abuse leading to child fatalities. and find more bipartisan solutions to addressing that serious matter. i reflect on the testimony of a witness from dallas, mad lynn mcclure, the executive director of the texas association for protection of children, who testified before our committee very recently that the estimate of 753,000 children being abused and neglected in america is a conservative one but that to put it in context, if you fill the alamodome, the hubert humphrey dome in minneapolis, yankee stadium, the stadium in georgia, in tennessee, tiger stadium in louisiana, the rows bowl, the -- the rose bowl, you would still have -- you would fill that and still not cover all of the children who are subject to abuse and neglect
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each year in this country. and almost half of those children that are abused are aged 4 or under. our bill provides an opportunity to take an important step forward in developing a national strategy to protect our most vulnerable children. the commission, appointed by the president and congress, would develop recommendations to reduce the number of children who die from abuse and neglect. the commission would bring together a group of experts from around the country in a wide variety of professions to identify provential efforts. so little of the resources that we focus on abuse and neglect in children today goes to prevention. and that should be an important focus in a broad sense, as well as the collection of good data so we can adequately compare what's happening and can also understand the best practices that are already under way in
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many communities across america. as we listen to experts, both in our recent hearing in front of the subcommittee on human resources, and last year when we held a hearing, we note the need for what one called an accessible blueprint for the states to implement better child prevention abuse strategy. that's a blueprint that this commission can provide. in my home state of texas, there are groups like voices for children, in san antonio, casa, children shelters in san antonio, austin and other communities, they are all serving as a voice for the voiceless and trying to prevent child abuse. there are local leaders like texas state senator ureste who was a moving force behind the blue ribbon task force and the bearx county task force on abuse. these important tasks these people are doing has been a
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great benefit, but despite it, the fatalities that are stemming from child abuse continue to grow, and they're almost at epidemic proportions in texas and in san antonio in particular. last year there were almost 6 thond confirmed cases of child abuse in the -- 6,000 confirmed cases of child abuse in texas, particularly in bearx county. in the last decade, texas had over 2,000 children who were killed, who died as a result of abuse and neglect. and last year we had a total in texas of nearly 66,000 confirmed cases. that's just too much. there is more that we can do that we must do to protect these youngest americans. child abuse and neglect is not isolated. the children don't just bounce back. the consequences of abuse and neglect are felt throughout the
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lifetime and indeed often from one generation to another. these conditions can linger for a lifetime. the data are clear. among those adults who have experienced the highest level of childhood trauma, these individuals were five times more likely to suffer from alcoholism, nine times more likely to be involved in drug abuse, three times more likely to be clinically depressed, and four times more likely to be addicted to nicotine. additional research shows a relationship between childhood abuse and the presence of a range of adult diseases. in the past, this congress' adoption of expert advice has provided progress in dealing with the issue of child neglect and abuse. we made some positive changes to the way children are placed in foster care and have elevated child safety as a primary welfare goal for the states. but as evidence by the statistics, there are gaps in policy. there's much more work to be
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done to reduce the number of children who die each year in the hands of someone who's supposed to be caring for them. the protect our kids act is a significant step in the right direction, and i urge its approval, reserving the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas reserves. the gentleman from minnesota. mr. paulsen: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. paulsen: mr. speaker, today we have an opportunity to improve the way our child welfare system works. we have a chance to learn what is most effective in preventing fatalities from child abuse and neglect. by making and acting on this bill today, we can make a significant difference in the lives of children who need to be protected. in the hearing that we held this last week in the protect our kids act of 2012, i shared the heartbreaking story of devin drake who is an example of the type of tragedy that we hope to prevent through the work of this commission. in august of 2011, devin drake was a 3-year-old boy living just outside of minneapolis with his mother and her
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boyfriend. child welfare officials had been in contact with the family previously, but this wasn't enough to prevent what happened next. it was on one faithful night that devin was seriously injured when his mother's boyfriend struck him, knocking him down to the bathroom floor. devin hit his head hard enough that he had trouble standing up, but neither his mother nor her boyfriend took the time to bring him to the hospital. his condition worsened the next day. doctors said that devin had severe head trauma, punctured lungs and several contusions. a few days later devin died. this bill will help prevent those types of tragedies. they would review the current effectiveness of child welfare services and examine fatalities. and through this work this commission can provide congress and others with critical
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information on how we can improve our child abuse prevention efforts. i note that while this bill provides some resources for the commission to do its work, thanks to chairman camp and mr. doggett, they make sure that the commission operates within existing social services funding. as a result, this bill does not add to the deficit. this shows how critical this issue is and how bipartisan this issue is as well. i urge all my colleagues to support this important legislation and reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from minnesota reserves his time. the chair would appreciate it if members and staff could take their conversations to the cloakroom. the chair recognizes the gentleman from texas. mr. doggett: thank you, mr. speaker. at this time i would yield two minutes to the gentlewoman from california who has a co-chair of the foster youth caucus and
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who has actively participated in coming to the hearings in our committee because of her great interest in preventing child abuse, ms. bass. the speaker pro tempore: the chair recognizes the gentlelady from california for two minutes. ms. bass: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise today in strong support of the protect our kids act. first of all, i want to thank ranking member doggett and chairman camp and ranking member -- chairman, rather, paulsen, for your leadership and commitment to eliminating child fatalities. unfortunately, federal government statistics estimate that every day in america approximately 2,000 children are confirmed victims of child abuse and neglect. nearly 700 children are removed from their families and placed in foster care due to child abuse and neglect, and about four children die as a result. additionally, in fiscal year 2010 alone, more than 1,500 children in the u.s. died due to maltreatment. of these, more than 40% were under the age of 1 years old
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and more than 80% were under the age of 4. these statistics are absolutely unacceptable. and to make matters worse, research has shown that these reports substantially underestimate the number of children who die due to maltreatment. as a nation, we have a responsibility to develop effective strategies and solutions to proactively stop this abuse and neglect. when children are removed from their homes, they really become our children, and it is our responsibility. while congress has enacted a variety of laws regarding child welfare protection, there is no unified comprehensive federal strategy for reducing instances of child abuse and neglect. this bill will ensure that the highest level of government work together to develop a national strategy to eliminate child abuse and neglect fatalities. by bringing together experts on child development, trauma and crisis intervention, pediatric, social work, law enforcement, criminal law and substance abuse treatment, the commission
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will truly protect our kids. as the co-chair of the congressional caucus on foster youth, i look forward to continue working with my colleagues to help prevent child abuse, neglect and fatalities. i urge my colleagues to support h.r. 6655. thank you and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady from california yields back her time. the gentleman from minnesota. mr. paulsen: mr. speaker, we have no other speakers. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas. mr. doggett: i would yield myself such time as i may consume, mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. doggett: as texas district judge darlene byrne, a leader in establishing child protection courts, said childhood should be a time of innocence and freedom but is a sad fact that many children are vulnerable to injury and abuse. our nation's children need good leaders to stand up and find creative ways to protect them from harm. the creation of the national commission to end child fatalities is an important step in that direction. at a hearing, mr. speaker, of our ways and means human
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resources subcommittee that we held over a year ago, i expressed hope that we would be able to come together in a bipartisan response. today we are doing just that. as we take this step toward reducing child neglect and abuse, i'd like to thank the many child protection groups that have been so instrumental in providing input and support for this legislation, including the members of the national coalition to end child abuse and deaths. particularly the national association of social workers, the national center for the review and prevention of child deaths, the national children's alliance, every child matters education fund, and of course the national district attorneys association as well as individuals like michael, teresa, who testified before our committee, kim day, terry covington, and john. we have a real chance to see this bipartisan legislation become law this very year, in the few days that remain. there is similar bipartisan
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legislation that was introduced last year, at the same time i originally filed the bill, that is authored by senators kerry and collins. i'm hopeful that the senate will see the bipartisan action that we have here today and the commitment we have and will move forward with this improved version of the legislation quickly. and i yield the balance of my time and my thanks to chairman paulsen. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas yields back his time. the gentleman from minnesota, mr. paulsen. mr. paulsen: mr. speaker, yumeds. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. paulsen: mr. speaker, as the protect our kids act of 2012 will help us prevent child fatalities, from abuse and neglect, the commission created by this bill will show us how we can improve on our current efforts and it will help provide us with the information we need to move forward on this issue. i urge my colleagues to support the bill today. i want to thank not only chairman camp but ranking member doggett for his leadership and his passion on this issue. i urge support and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. all time has expired. the question is will the house
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suspend the rules and pass the bill h.r. 6655. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. the gentleman from minnesota. mr. paulsen: i ask for the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is requesting the yeas and nays. all those in favor of taking this vote by the yeas and nays will rise and remain standing until counted. a sufficient number having arisen, the yeas and nays are ordered. pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, further proceedings on this motion will be postponed.
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the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? >> mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that the committee on transportation and infrastructure be discharged from further consideration of h.r. 6166 and ask for its immediate consideration in the house. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 6166, a bill to designate the united states
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courthouse located at 333 west broadway street in san diego, california, as the james m. carter and judith n. keep united states courthouse. the speaker pro tempore: is there objection to consideration of this bill? seeing none, without objection, the bill is engrossed, read a third time and passed and the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table. for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? mr. denham: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that the committee on transportation and infrastructure be discharged from further consideration of h.r. 6633 and ask for its immediate consideration in the house. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 6633, a bill to designate the united states courthouse located at 101 east pee can street in sherman, texas, as the paul broun united states courthouse. the speaker pro tempore: is there objection to consideration of the bill? seeing none, without objection, the bill is engrossed, read a third time and passed and the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table.
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for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? mr. denham: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days in which to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous material on h.r. 6633. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? mr. denham: mr. speaker, i move to suspend the rules and pass senate bill 3311. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: senate 3311, an act to designate the united states courthouse located at 2601 2nd avenue north, billings, montana, as the james f. battin united states courthouse. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from california, mr. denham, and the gentlewoman from california, mrs. nal, each will control 20 minutes -- mrs. napolitano, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes mr. denham. mr. denham: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days in which to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous material on senate bill 3311.
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the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. the gentleman from california. mr. denham: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. denham: senate bill 3311 would designate the united states courthouse located at 26012nd avenue north billings, montana, as the james f. battin united states courthouse. judge battin received his law degree from george washington university law school in 1951, prior to attending law school during world war ii, judge battin served in the united states navy. early in his career judge battin practiced law in washington, d.c., and in billings, montana, later he served in a number of public service positions including deputy county attorney for yellowstone county, montana, and city attorney in billings. in 1958 judge battin served as a state representative in montana and in 1961 he was elected to u.s. house of representatives and served as a u.s. representative from montana until 1969. in 1969 judge battin was appointed by president nixon to be a judge on the u.s. district
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court for the district of montana. during that time he served as chief judge from 1978 to 1990, when he assumed senior status. judge battin's commitment to public service is clear. i believe his dedication to serving this nation makes it fitting to name this courthouse after him. i support passage of this legislation and urge my colleagues to do the same. mr. speaker, i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california, mr. denham, reserves the balance of his time. the gentlelady from california, mrs. napolitano. mrs. napolitano: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized. mrs. napolitano: mr. speaker, i rise in support of s. 3311. it's a bill to designate the courthouse in billings, montana, as the james f. battin united states courthouse. as my colleague has so aptly stated, in 1969 president nixon appointed james battin to the federal bench in billings, montana, where he continued his 40 years of public service to the citizens of that statement in 1978 judge battin was
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appointed chief judgment and served in that position for 12 years. he remained active in judicial affairs until his death in september of 1996. prior to his judicial appointment, judge battin served in the house of representatives representing eastern montana from 1960 to 1969, when he resigned to receive his judicial appointment. while in this congress, judge battin served on the judiciary committee, on the foreign affairs committee and the ways and means. judge battin was also a world war ii navy veteran, a member of the montana state legislature and also billings' city attorney and general counsel for the billings' planning board. it is fitting to honor the contributions of judge battin, a greet hero to montana, he's made the public service and designation of the u.s. courthouse in billings, montana, as the james f. battin united states courthouse. i urge support of senate bill 3311 and urge my colleagues to also support the bill.
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i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady from california reserves her time. the gentleman from california, mr. denham. mr. denham: mr. speaker, i yield the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california yields back his time. the gentlelady from california, mrs. napolitano. mrs. napolitano: mr. speaker, i also yield back my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back her time. all time having expired the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass senate bill 3311. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended and the bill is passed and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table. the gentleman from california. mr. denham: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days in which to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous material on h.r. 6166. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered.
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the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from washington state seek recognition? mr. hastings: i move to pass the bill. the clerk: senate 9 a 25, a -- an act to mount andrea lawrence. the speaker pro tempore: the chair recognizes the gentleman from washington. mr. hastings: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous material on the bill under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without
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objection, so ordered. mr. hastings: i yield myself as much time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from washington is recognized. mr. hastings: thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, s. 25 will designate -- s. 925 will designate an unnamed mountain in california as the mount andrea lawrence in honor of the late owe limpic i ask -- olympic skier and leader in that area. similar legislation passed the house by a voice vote in the last congress but was not taken up in the other body. so i once again urge my colleagues to support this simple bill whose companion measure i might add in the house is authored by our colleague from california, mr. mckeon. so with that i urge support and i reserve the balance of my time. >> thank you, mr. speaker. i yield myself as much time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. >> bill designated a mountain peak at the northern border of the wilderness in yosemite national park in california as mount andrea lawrence. mr. grijalva: a former olympic
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skier and conductee into the u.s. national ski hall of fame was a community leader in northern california who worked to protect these special places and communities in the eastern sierras. we applaud senator boxer and congress mckeon for this legislation, we support the passage of this legislation and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from washington. mr. hastings: mr. speaker, i have no more requests for time and i'm prepared to yield back if my friend from arizona is prepared to yield back. grigri mr. speaker, yield back -- mr. grijalva: mr. speaker, i yield back. mr. hastings: i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: all time having expired the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass senate bill 925. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative -- mr. grijalva: i object to the vote on the grounds that a quorum is not present and i make a point of order that a quorum is not present. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, further proceedings on the motion will be postponed.
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the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from texas seek recognition? >> mr. speaker, i move what the house suspend the rules and pass senate 2170. the clerk: an act to amend the provisions of title 5, united states code, which are commonly referred to as the hag act, to
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scale back the provision for permitting certain state and local employees from seeking elective office. clarify the application of certain provisions to the district of columbia and modify the penalties which may be imposed for certain violations under subchapter 3 of title -- of chapter 73 of that title. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from texas, mr. farenthold, and the gentleman from missouri, mr. clay, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from texas. mr. farenthold: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield myself as much time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. farenthold: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days in which to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous material on the bill under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. farenthold: adoption today of s. 2170 will mark an important step in the government oversight and reform committee's long-term effort to modernize the hatch act. at its best, the hatch act keeps partisan politics out of the workplace and prevents those in political power from abusing their authority to advance
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partisan political causes. at its worst, however, the hatch act causes the federal government to unnecessarily interfere in the rights of well-qualified candidates to run for local office. s. 2170 addresses these flaws by easing the restrictions on state and local government employees and employees of the district of columbia government -- who are covered by the hatch act. the bill also provides a greater range of penalties, in addition to termination, for those federal employees who violate the law. s. 2170 will allow more individuals the right to run for public office without violating the hatch act. under current law, state and local government employees may not run for partisan office if their job is connected to federal funding. for example, in pennsylvania a k-9 officer was not allowed to run for local school board because his partner, a black labrador, was tied to funding from the department of homeland security. in another case, the u.s.
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special office of special council said he violated the hatch act if he ran for county coroner because some of the patients he transported received medicaid. enforcing -- in enforcing the hatch act, the special counsel office routinely advises deputy sheriffs they're ineligible to run for sheriff and the number of local law enforcement hatch act cases has dramatically increase with the influx of federal dollars to local police departments as a result of the attacks on september 11, 2001. the best candidate for local law enforcement and other positions are often disqualified for participating in a local election. the concerns is especially acute in rural areas where the pool of candidates for elective office is limited by the population. congressman latta has led the way in championing hatch act reform for state and local this was. the national this was association -- sheriffs association said it severely
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limits the number of qualified candidates for sheriffs. o.s.c. is required to intervene in state and local contests hundreds of times a year through formal investigations. o.s.c. issues thousands of advisory opinions yearly to potential state and local candidates. approximately 45% of o.s.c.'s overall hatch act caseload, including more than 500 investigations over the past two years, involve state and local campaign cases. these cases do not involve any allegations of coercive or abusive political conduct. investigating hundreds of state and local campaigns annually is a pure use of o.s.c. budgets and puts a burden on state and local localities who must respond to these investigations. it should be spending its limited resources on investigations of waste, fraud and abuse in the federal government and not interfering with state and local elections and disqualifying qualified
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candidates for seeking elected office. with that i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas reserves his time. the gentleman from missouri. >> mr. speaker, yume. -- i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. clay: i rise in support of s. 2170, the hatch act modernization act. this bill is based on recommendations from the head of the u.s. office of special counsel, carolyn lerner. this was introduced by senator daniel akaka, along with the ranking member of the oversight committee, elijah cummings. this bill will make three key reforms. the first reform will allow state and local government workers to run for a political office. the hatch act prohibits any of these employees from running in a partisan political election if their job involves federal funding. this creates problems for many government workers who are
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otherwise well qualified to run for local offices. for example, mr. john grinder had to be fired as police chief of ogden, utah, because he ran for a state senate seat and won. ms. kristen desenzo, an illinois employee, could not run for state clerk because of this barrier. she said i was utterly deflated. it's utter insanity. this will institute less severe penalties for hatch act violations. it requires employees who violate the hatch act to be terminated unless the merit systems protection board unanimously votes for a lesser penalty. john adler, the president of the federal law enforcement officers association, testified that this penalty system is draconian.
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the third reform made by this bill is to treat district of columbia employees, like state and local government employees under the hatch act. this is a commonsense change. in closing i support the hatch act modernization act, and i hoch that every member of the house -- and i hope that every member of the house will support the bill so it can become law. mr. speaker, i ask that we pass the underlying bill and reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from missouri reserves his time. the gentleman from texas. mr. farenthold: thank you, mr. speaker. at this time i'd like to yield three minutes to my friend and colleague, member of the government oversight and reform committee, mr. chaffetz of utah. the chair: the gentleman from utah is recognized for three minutes. mr. chaffetz: thank you, mr. speaker. i thank the gentleman from texas. i rise in support of senate bill 2170, the hatch act modernization act of 2012. i'd also like to thank and commend ranking member cummings and his work with chairman issa for bringing this bill to the
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floor on a bipartisan and bicameral basis. i want to commend senator mike lee for his concern, particularly what happened in utah, and his good work with senator akaka. the bill wouldn't be here without their good work and i commend them both on working on, again, in a bipartisan way. i'm also a proud co-sponsor of h.r. 4152, sponsored by ranking member cummings. i'm glad to come together with him, which is the house compan wrong to senate 2170. senate bill 2170 makes long overdue reforms to the hatch act which became law nearly 75 years ago. while numerous reforms of this legislation includes -- are all important, i haddy like to highlight the reform made by section 2 of this bill. in may of this year the oversight and government reform subcommittee with jurisdiction on the federal work force, held a hearing the ongoing problems of the hatch act and options for reform. at the hearing the subcommittee heard from fellow -- my fellow utahan, john griner, an individual with experience with the hatch act, that has become
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far too common. serving chief of the ogden city, utah, police department was elected to the utah state senate. while this occasion would presumably be joyous, unfortunately for chief griner it was the beginning of a five-year legal battle with the federal entities charged with the enforcing of the hatch act. after the end of the costly legal battle, chief griner was ultimately found by these federal entities to have violated the hatch act in december of 2011. chief griner was not only fired by the city of ogden with this violation but banned by the federal government from serving as a law enforcement officer in utah for 18 months. and what did chief griner did to deserve such punishment? he simply signed a required quarterly report for a federal technology grant awarded to upgraded the westbounder and morgan county dispatch center. a federal grant that didn't
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benefit the ogden police department but enhanced the dispatch capabilities for the entire county. chief griner did not receive a cent. money in his paycheck nor his department. he was the city and department's point of contact. after one pen stroke and a career of nearly four decades of distinguished public service. thankfully, mr. speaker, section 2 of senate bill 2170 will now make it possible for state and local public servants whose job is connected for federal funding will be able to run for office while those who are paid by the federal government from running for office. sadly, mr. speaker, chief griner -- i'm happy to say after this legislation is passed, it should never, ever happen again. i urge my colleagues to join me in supporting this bipartisan, bicameral piece of legislation. again, thank chairman issa for making this happen and for the work of ranking member cummings. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the time of the gentleman has expired. the gentleman from missouri.
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mr. clay: mr. speaker, i'd like to yield five minutes to the gentleman from maryland and the chief sponsor of the bill, elijah cummings. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from maryland is recognized for five minutes. mr. cummings: thank you, mr. speaker. i would like to thank the gentleman for yielding. i rise in support of the hatch act modernization act. senator akaka and i introduced this legislation, along with app number of our distinguished -- with a number of our distinguished colleagues on each side of the aisle. it incorporates recommendations for reform that the special counsel carolyn lerner sent to congress last year. i want to thank senator akaka not only for his work on this bill but for everything he's done for federal workers. i also take a moment to thank my good friend, representative jason chaffetz. the chairman of the national security subcommittee for his very hard work in support of this legislation as well as chairman issa for helping to bring this bill to the floor today. this legislation makes
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commonsense reforms to the hatch act that are much needed. the hatch act was passed to ensure that federal government employees work on behalf of the american people rather than whatever political party is in power. the law works well most of the time, but it has had some unintended consequences. currently, the hatch act prohibits state and local government employees from running for partisan political office if they work on programs that receive federal funding. this can and has led to some unfair and absurd results. for example, matthew, a transit officer in philadelphia, was barred from running for his school board because his k-9 partner was paid for by federal grants. the officer told "the washington post," and i quote,
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"i was upset because i truly believed i had something to offer my community." mr. speaker, i'd like to include in the record a "new york times" op-ed by special counsel carolyn lerner. in her op-ed, special counsel lerner wrote, and i quote, "increasingly the act is being used and a political weapon to disqualify otherwise well qualified candidates even when there is no indication of wrongdoing." this bill will fix that. thank you, mr. speaker. the hatch act modernization act also creates a range of penalties for hatch act violations. currently, the only available penalty for violation of the hatch act, no matter how moderate the violation, is termination unless the merit systems protection board votes unanimously to impose a lesser penalty. under this legislation, the board will have the ability to impose a punishment that fits
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the crime. this legislation also ensures that the district of columbia employees are treated similarly to state and local government employees rather than as federal employees. the hatch act modernization act makes reforms that are much needed, that are bipartisan, noncontroversial and widely supported. i urge my colleagues to support the bill and send it to the president for a signature, and, again, i want to thank all my colleagues for joining in on this effort, for making this commonsense bill law. and with that, mr. speaker, i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from maryland yields back. the gentleman from texas. mr. farenthold: thank you, mr. speaker. i'd like to yield two minutes now to my distinguished colleague from the state of ohio, mr. latta. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from ohio is recognized for two minutes. mr. latta: i thank the gentleman for yielding. mr. speaker, i rise today in support of the hatch act modernization act of 2012. i want to applaud chairman issa for the oversight and work he's done on the hatch act reform during this congress and thank him for working with me.
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i'm particularly pleased with the legislation before us today that contains a major piece of my legislation, h.r. 498, the state and local law enforcement hatch act reform act. currently, more than six decades since enactment of the original hatch act, there is virtually no law enforcement agency that does not receive some amount or type of federal funds. consequently, almost allstate or local law enforcement officers -- all state or local law enforcement officers must quit their job to run for the office of sheriff. this discourages experienced individuals from running for the position and places a serious financial burden on them. reform to the current version of the hatch act is southerly needed. with the passage -- sorely needed. with the passage of this, we ensure that they elect the best candidate as their sheriff. further reform to the hatch act is still needed, but the hatch act modernization act is a step in the right direction and will do a great deal to make sure that highly qualified men and women are able to run for the
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office of sheriff or other elected positions. i want to thank congressman tim holden for his partnership with me in this congress on my legislation, hatch act reform for state and local law enforcement officers, and i look forward to continue to work on this issue in the upcoming congresses. i thank the gentleman and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from missouri. mr. clay: mr. speaker, at this time i'd like to yield five minutes to the gentlewoman from the district of columbia. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady from the district of columbia is recognized for five minutes. ms. norton: thank you, mr. speaker. i thank the gentleman for yielding and for his work in helping to bring this bill to the floor today. i especially want to thank ranking member of the oversight and government reform committee, elijah cummings, who introduced the hatch act modernization act of 2012 in the house and to thank senator daniel akaka who introduced the bill in the senate. i want to especially thank
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chairman darrell issa who held very productive and revealing hearings on the hatch act during this session without which this bill could not have come to the floor today, and i thank our friends in the senate, senators joseph lieberman and susan collins, who had their own hearings to modernize the hatch act and who supported the d.c. provisions of this bill as well. these provisions per tape to the district of columbia only -- pertains to the district of columbia only. the act contains two of our long-time priority bills for the district. the district of columbia hatch act reform and the hatch act national capital regional parody act, giving d.c. full quality under the federal hatch act. our first bill, the district of
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columbia hatch act reform act, included in this bill, passed the house in the last congress but stalled in the senate. i have been fighting for a local d.c. hatch act for most of my service in the congress. this bill, this d.c. hatch act reform bill eliminates discriminatory treatment of the district of columbia which alone among u.s. jurisdictions still falls under the federal hatch act, as it did before congress made the district an independent jurisdiction that became able to enact its own local laws. my provision retains federal hatch act authority concerning prohibited partisan and political activity that applies to every state and locality upon receipt of federal funds or functions. and requires the district tone act its own local hatch act,
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barring similar local violations. and i'm pleased to say that the district has already done that and is waiting only for passage of this bill and for a signing by the president. local hatch act violations in the district are rare. but the district needs to be able to enforce its own hatch act to fully account, to be fully accountable and responsible for local violations with which only a local objective body would be familiar . the present treatment of district employees under the federal act, as if these employees of a local government were employees of a federal agency, has led to confusion for the office of special council or o.s.c., which enforces the hatch act. in a recent case, a -- an
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advisory neighborhood commissioner, elected by the people of the district of columbia, were cited for violations of the hatch act when he ran for higher office, even though these commissioners are elected officials under local d.c. law. or to cite another absurdity, the district of columbia will have its first election for a partisan attorney general in 2014. under current laws the winner of that election would be treated as if he were a federal employee without this bill. that would mean that the person who won the office of attorney general for the district of columbia would have to resign that office in 2014 in order to
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seek re-election in 2018. and this is not what the federal hatch act, let alone a local hatch act, would have intended. as a result of the failure to clear up the confusion between local and federal jurisdictions, the application of the hatch act to d.c. employees, d.c. government employees has been selectively enforced by the o.s.c. the present law leaves o.p.m. with local responsibility when federal jurisdiction is not implicated. this fix therefore is long overdue. our second provision, the hatch act national capital region parity act, allows employees to run as independent candidates in
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local partisan elections. under the federal hatch act, federal employees generally may not be candidates in partisan elections. in the 1940's congress however -- may i have another minute? mr. cummings: i grant an additional minute. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized for an additional minute. ms. norton: in the 1940's, congress however gave o.p.m. authority to exempt federal employees and towns in maryland virginia and the immediate vicinity of the district from the hatch act's prohibitions on federal employees running in partisan elections. so the towns with a high concentration of federal employees would not be deprived by having a significant percentage of their residents unable to participate in local affairs. however, o.p.m. was not given the authority to exempt federal employees living in d.c. because the city did not have local elections before the home rule act of 1973. the hatch act modernization act
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combines these two bills and brings the district one step closer to equal treatment in self-government and implements these and other commonsense provisions to the hatch act. they are many. i applaud the chairman and the ranking member for the entire act. i thank them very much that our provisions are included and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas. mr. farenthold: mr. speaker, i have no other speakers at this time and continue to reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from missouri. mr. cummings: mr. speaker, i have no further speakers on this bill and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas. mr. farenthold: thank you very much, mr. speaker. i want to take this one final opportunity to urge my colleagues to support the hatch act modernization act of 2012. we've heard from speakers on both sides of the aisle, indicating some of the absurd results that we have seen as a result of this act, none more glaring than the officer whose
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k-9 partner was prohibited from running for office. with that, and all the other examples, i think it's clear we need to support passage of s. 2170. i see the chairman has -- has asked for some time. if my colleague on the other side of the aisle doesn't on, i would like to -- object, i would like to yield the chairman, mr. issa, two minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. issa: i thank the speaker and i want to thank my colleagues and particularly my friend, mr. clay. it is not often that we get to come here as a committee and talk about something that in fact affects perceived government cronyism and misconduct, that -- a law that protects the american people against politics getting into your government, and then say,
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but we need to reduce it a little. we need to make it a little tighter. this is an example. an example where, as many of my colleagues have said, unintended consequences have made a good bill into a bill that stifles the opportunity and legitimate political activity that occurs by people serving in state and local office. so i join with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle, with my good friend from the district of columbia, and say this is the time in which we're making small technical changes that make a big difference to our political landscape around the -- around the country and in a good way. we want to make sure that we have the opportunity to have everyone participate and i want to thank members of both parties for bringing this bill and i want to particularly thank my colleague, mr. cummings, for his effort throughout the entire congress to get us where we are here today. i thank the speaker and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas. mr. farenthold: thank you very
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much. i do urge all members to join me in support of this bill and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass senate 2170. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas seek recognition? mr. farenthold: mr. speaker, i move the house suspend the rules and pass s. 3564. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: senate 3564, an act to extend the public interest declassification act of 2000 until 2014 and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from texas, mr. farenthold, and the gentleman from missouri, mr. clay, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from texas. mr. farenthold: thank you very much, mr. speaker. i yield myself as much time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. farenthold: i'd also like to ask unanimous consent that all members have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous materials on the bill under consideration.
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the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. farenthold: thank you very much. senate 3564, the public interest declassification board act re-authorizes the public interest declassification board or p.i. -- pidb for an additional two years. without congressional act the pidb will sunset on december 31 of 2012. the pidb is an advisory committee tasked with improving and modernizing the process used to classify and declassify government information. the volume of classified information has skyrocketed in recent years due to the rapid increase in electronic communications as well as an institutional bias that prefers over-classification as a risk avoidance strategy. over-classification can unduly hinder much-needed public transparency and the ability to rapidly share information across the government. the chief goals of the pidb are to help develop effective modern standards and processes for
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classification and declassification. to address the problems created by over-classification and promote the fullest possible public access to national security records through efficient and timely declassification systems. s. 3564 will further the cause of transparency by maintaining an expert advisory group, to ensure the executive branch is classifying and declassifying records in a timely and responsible manner. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from missouri. mr. clay: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. clay: i rise in support of this important legislation. this bill renews the authorization of the public interest declassification board. the pidb is an advisory committee whose purpose is to promote the fullest possible public access to significant national security decisions and activities. the pidb advises the president on policies related to
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classification and declassification of national security information. the board also advises the president on the declassification and release of classified records with historical value. the authorization for the pidb is set to expire at the end of this month. it is important that we re-authorize the authority for this panel so that their important work is not jeopardized. just last month the pidb issued a report to the president entitled, transforming the security classification system. the report made a number of recommendations for improving the classification system. the report criticized our current system. and it stated, we believe the current classification and declassification systems are outdated and incapable of dealing adequately with -- at quatly with the large -- adequately with the large volumes of classified information generated in an era of digital communications and information systems.
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overcoming the entrenched practices that no longer serve the purpose of protecting our national security will prove difficult. transparency and access to information are essential tools for effective oversight of the executive branch. outdated systems for managing classified information must be modernized to provide greater public access to information about the federal government policies or activities. re-authorizing the p.i.d. -- pidb is critical to thattest and i support this bill and i urge my colleagues to do the same and, mr. speaker, i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas. mr. farenthold: i have no further speakers. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from missouri. mr. clay: mr. speaker, i have no further speakers and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas. mr. farenthold: thank you, mr. speaker. as we've heard, this bill promotes a bipartisan-supported transparency in the government
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and i urge my colleagues to support the passage of the public interest declassification board re-authorization act of 2012, s. 3564, and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass senate 3564. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative -- the gentleman from texas. mr. farenthold: i ask for the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, further proceedings on this motion will be postponed. are the yeas and nays requested? mr. farenthold: yes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, further proceedings on this motion will be postponed. all those in favor of taking this vote by the yeas and nays will rise and remain standing until counted. a sufficient number having arisen, the yeas and nays are ordered. pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, further proceedings on this motion will be postponed.
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for what purpose does the gentleman from texas seek recognition? mr. farenthold: mr. speaker, i move that the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 6016. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 6016, a bill to amend title 5, united states code, to provide for administrative leave requirements with respect to senior executive service employees and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: does the gentleman seek to call the bill up in its amended form? mr. farenthold: i do. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from texas, mr. farenthold, and the gentleman from missouri, mr. clay, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from texas. mr. farenthold: i ask that all members have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous material on the bill under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. farenthold: thank you very much, mr. speaker. earlier this year, the committee on government oversight and reform held a
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heerning the wasteful spending that occurred in the execution of the general services administration 2010 western regional conference. the g.s.a. spent more than $820,000 on a conference originally budgeted at $250,000. the g.s.a. has no triggers or controls in place to stop this flagrant overspending. g.s.a. employees, including jeff neely, a member of the senior executive service, failed to follow policy, federal procurement law or basic common sense. this helps ensure senior executives or s.e.s. employees are accountable for their actions. it allows an s.e.s. employee to be fired for such actions. i'd like to commend my colleague, mr. kelly, for his
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work on this bill and urge all members to support its adoption. i reserve the balance of the time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from missouri. mr. clay: mr. speaker, i thank the majority -- the majority for working with us to make additional improvements to h.r. 6016, the government employee accountability act, as amended. i want to thank the gentleman, mr. kelly, from california, who introduced this bill to address an unfortunate intstans where a few senior executive service officials at the g.s.a. received a lot of attention regarding their extravagant spending on a los angeles -- a las vegas conference. while i fully support the purpose and intent of this legislation to prevent misappropriation and misuse of taxpayer dollars, we need to be careful not to allow the bad actions of a few government
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employees to take away from the good work that our federal workers do every day. i have the greatest respect and appreciation for our federal workers. and i think we all need to be reminded that these men and women devote their professional lives to serving all americans. this is a special -- this is especially important to note given the recent legislation, attacking these middle class federal workers pay and benefits. i believe in the importance of safeguarding taxpayer dollars and holding our public servants accountable and for this reason, i support this bill, and mr. speaker, i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas. mr. farenthold: at this time i'd like to yield as much time as he may consume to my friend, colleague, and neighbor on the government oversight and reform committee, the gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. kelly. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for such time as he may consume.
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mr. kelly: thank you, i rise in support of h.r. 60616 -- 6016 and thank the gentleman from texas and the gentleman from missouri, mr. clay. thank you very much. the result of this, i think both sides when we have that hearing last spring we were outraged. i remember chairman issa speaking out very strongly and also ranking member cummings speaking out very strong. we truly are the stewards of the taxpayer money and what we said was we were going to get to the bottom of this, find out why this happened and how it happened. when i got back to my office our switchboard was lighting up. people from back home in western pennsylvania were saying why, why is this happening? i stress what you said, we have a lot of wonderful people working very hard for this country and very hard for this government. we don't want to paint them all with the same brush. but when there is wrongdoing we need to step up.
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this is a common sense solution to a situation that has to be addressed. working together, this is a bipartisan effort to make sure we have great accountable for the taxpayer dollars being spent. this piece of legislation as it goes forward today, let's make sure we understand this, these are the senior executives. these are the creme de la creme, the top, top people, and that western region conference, as mr. farenthold pointed out, was $600,000 over budget. at some point you have to wonder why. when we asked the g.s.a., why is mr. neely on leave with pay? she said, we don't have any mechanism to prevent that from happening. we don't have the tools to do that. so what we said was, let's go back to the regular world, go back to common sense rules and give them a tool to use that makes sense for the american people. i want to say, mr. clay, it's nice working with you on this i
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want to thank the committee, we did work to come up with something that makes sense for america and for the people who work for us. i thank you and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from missouri. mr. clay: i continue to reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas. mr. farenthold: i'd like to recognize the chame of the transportation and infrastructure committee and my colleague on the government oversight and reform committee, the gentleman from florida, mr. mica. the speaker pro tempore: for how much time? mr. farenthold: for two-minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. mica: thank you, and i thank the gentleman for yielding. particularly i want to thank mr. kelly for his introduction and sponsorship of h.r. 6016 and encourage my colleagues to support that legislation today. most often when you hear about scandals in the federal government, there's a little bit of a flurry and then not much is done. mr. kelly has stepped forward
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and introduced legislation that will correct one of the most egregious actions against the federal taxpayer that we've seen. our committee, the transportation committee, does oversee the general services administration and within that agency, we heard about the conduct of one senior executive employee, the senior executive services, the -- one of the highest levels of administration in our government. that person thumbed his nose in the hot tub at the taxpayers, at the congress, and everyone else. today this is taxpayers' revenge. this is a little gift, hopefully we can put under the christmas tree for the taxpayers so people in those positions will not receive their pay and can be removed from office. we had to change the law and we will change the law to make certain that people who are
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supposed to be good stewards of the taxpayer dollars are held accountable. so i thank everyone in a bipartisan manner in bringing this legislation forward and strongly support its adoption. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from missouri. mr. clay: i have no further speakers and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas. mr. farenthold: as we have heard from both sides of the aisle, this is a bill designed to prevent the worst kind of overspending, one of the worst examples we have seen, i understand mr. clay and agree with his concerns that we cannot violate the due process rights of government employees. we've worked to protect that. but we've also worked very hard to do the job that we were elected to do and that is to be good stewards of the taxpayers' money and this bill, the government employees
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accountability act, h.r. 6016, mr. kelly's bill, does just that. i urge my colleagues to support the bill. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill h.r. 6016 as amended? those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 being in the affirmative -- mr. farenthold: i'd like to request the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas an nays are requested. those in support of taking this vote by the yeas and nays will rise and remain standing until counted. a sufficient number having risen, the yeas and nays are ordered. pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, further proceedings on this motion will be postponed. for what purpose does the gentleman rise. mr. farenthold: i ask for consideration of h.r. 6672. the clerk: h.r. 467 2.
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the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas, mr. farenthold, and the gentleman from missouri, mr. clay, each will control 20 minutes. mr. farenthold: i ask that all members have five legislative days to revise and extendnary remarks and includics trains you materials on h.r. 4062. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. farenthold: h.r. 4062 would designate the facility of the united states postal service located at 1444 main street in in california as the nelson "mac" macwilliams post office building. it was introduced on february 16. mr. mcwilliams served in the u.s. navy for 22 1999. upon returning to civilian life he was a small business owners. -- owner. he served his community in san diego in many ways including with the ramona chamber of commerce.
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he's responsible for assisting local fire victims and military personnel in mr. hunter's district office. sadly nearly a year ago, on december 20, 2011, mr. mcwilliams pass aid way. he's remembered fondly by his wife, brothers, sons, daughters and several grandchildren. mr. speaker, mr. mcwilliams is a very worthy designee of this postal facility naming and i urge all members to join me in support of this bill and reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from missouri. mr. clay: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. clay: as a member of the house committee on oversight and government reform i am pleased to squoin my colleagues in the consideration of h.r. 4062 to designate the facility of the u.s. postal service located at 14444 main street in ramona, california, as the nelson "mac" macwilliams post office building.
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the bill before us was introduced by representative duncan hunter and mac williams, graduated from high school in maryland, and enlisted in the u.s. navy in 1977. upon his retirement from the navy, he would begin serving his community in california. and his work with the ramona chamber of commerce would establish him as a respected member within the community. he was called on by representative hunter to help small businesses within the community, his tireless efforts would help local small businesses succeed in cutting bureaucratic red tape. mr. speaker, i urge passage of the underlying measure and
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reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas. mr. farenthold: thank you very much. at this time i yield such time as he may consume to the gentleman from california, mr. hunter. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for such time as he may consume. mr. hunter: i thank the gentleman from texas and thank you for your kind words at mac nelson macwilliams. he passed away in 2011 in an unfortunate car accident that cost him his life on one of the most dangerous roads in san diego county. he was a dedicated public servant, proud navy veteran and all-around great guy to be around. san diego isn't just the city part where there's the ocean and beach. there's back clint in san diego. you have small towns like ramona where everyone knows each other, there's literally a place called cheers, a bar in ramona, where everybody does know your name. he was a member of the v.f.w.
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like my friend said he was in the navy from 19 7 to 1999 where he became a navy chief. if anybody knows the navy oar knows the u.s. military they understand that the navy runs on its chiefs this echiefs are the ones that actually get things done, the oning -- the ones you look to when you immediate to cut through the red tape and bureaucracy. he was also a member of the veterans of foreign wars post 3783 in ramona, california. it was because of their request along with others in ramona that i introduce this bill to name the post office in ramona for mac. when the devastating wildfires hit san diego in 2007, mac answered the call to serve us again. working tirelessly helping victims get assistance to rebuild their homes. as we can see from hurricane katrina or hurricane sandy, when natural disasters happen the bureaucracy sometimes is hard to get through but mac specialized at that as a navy chief he did the same thing working as executive director
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of the ramona, california, chamber of commerce for four years. in this position he advocated for businesses and built lasting relationships across the region. but he wasn't a big business guy. he came out of the navy. the reason he was chosen for that position is he was great to be with, he knew how to get along with people of differing views and ideologies and thousand get things done. the v.f.w. said in their letter that one of his states -- straits was that -- traits was that he was always on duty. there was never a problem too small which did not dictate 100% of effort to have it corrected thofpblee day he died, mac was coming into my office because he was in the middle of case work for a constituent and didn't want to wait until he got back from christmas vacation. at his funeral, one of my constituents in v.f. -- and v.f.w. post member dale smith described him saying he was a gentle, intelligent individual and get-it-done kind of guy, no matter what obstacle stood in his way. he was a proud veteran and
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public servant who served his country in the navy and served the people of his community on veterans and military issues he had a profound impact on his community and deserves recognition for his contributions and naming the post office for him in the community he did so much for is a fit weigh to commemorate his memory. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman missouri. claire clay i urge my colleagues to -- mr. clay: i urge my colleagues to join the entire house in honoring this great american and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas. mr. farenthold: thank you very much, mr. speaker. i too urge my colleagues to support h.r. 4062, the nelson mac d macwilliams post office building naming and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill h.r. 4062. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas rise? mr. farenthold: i move the house
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suspend the rules and pass h.r. 6587. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 6587, a bill to designate the facility of the united states postal service located at 225 semivillage drive in semivalley -- simi village drive in simi california. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas, mr. farenthold, and the gentleman from missouri, mr. clay, will each control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from texas. mr. farenthold: thank you, mr. chairman. i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous material on the bill under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. farenthold: thank you very much, mr. speaker. i yield as much time as he may consume to the gentleman from california. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. >> i thank the gentleman. mr. speaker, i rise today in support of my legislation, h.r. 6587. to designate the united states postal service facility located at 225 simi village drive in simi valley, california, as the postal inspector terry asbury postoffice building.
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terry asbury was born in superior, wisconsin, 1950. shortly after turning 18 he joined the united states army and served multiple tours in vietnam. after being honorably discharged in 1971, terry began his career in the united states postal service. he worked out of the van eyes facility, starting as a male clerk and handler before moving up all the way to u.s. postal inspector in 1986. on saturday, january 30, 1990, inspector asbury was returning in his vehicle after conducting an investigation in the los angeles area. when his vehicle was struck head-on by a van toing a boat and trailer -- towing a boat and trailer. three days later he succumbed to his injuries, passing away at the early age of 39. he was a loving husband and an exceptional person who went out of their way to help others and make the world a better place to live. i cannot see a more fitting way to memorialize a great american and resident might have hometown
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in simi valley, california, than to dedicate this post office as an honor. mr. speaker, i thank chairman issa, ranking member cummings and the others for allowing me to bring this bill on the floor today and ask for its quick -- in such a quick fashion and i urge my colleagues to support this legislation and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from missouri. mr. clay: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. clay: as a member of the house oversight and government reform committee, i'm pleased to join my colleagues in the consideration of h.r. 6587, to designate the facility of the u.s. postal service located at 225 simi valley drive in simi valley, california, as the post inspector terry asbury post office building. and i want to thank representative gallegly.
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on november 13, 2012, for introducing this bill. inspector asbury diligently served the u.s. postal service as postal inspector for four years when he was tragically killed while conducting an investigation. in remembrance of inspector asbury for his tireless work and dedication to service, i urge my colleagues to pass this bill and, mr. speaker, i have no further speakers so i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas. mr. farenthold: thank you very much, mr. speaker. i urge all members to support the passage of h.r. 6563. i can think of no more fitting way to honor the postal inspector asbury than naming this building after him. i do urge all members to support passage and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill h.r. 6587. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative -- the gentleman from texas.
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mr. farenthold: mr. speaker, i object to the vote on the grounds that a quorum is not present and i make a point of order that a quorum is not present. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, further proceedings on this motion will be postponed. pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, proceedings will resume on motions to suspend the rules previously postponed. votes will be taken in the following order. h.r. 6655 by the yeas and nays, s. 3564 by the yeas and nays, h.r. 6016 by the yeas and nays. the first electronic vote will be conducted as a 15-minute vote. remaining electronic votes will be conducted as five-minute votes. the unfinished business is the vote on the motion of the gentleman from michigan, mr. camp, to suspend the rules and pass h.r. 6655 on which the yeas and nays were ordered. the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 6655, a bill to establish a commission to develop a national strategy and recommendations for reducing fatalities resulting from child abuse and neglect. the speaker pro tempore: the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill. members will record their votes
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by electronic device. this is a 15-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
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